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If you've been itching to tip YouTube video producers, you'll be glad to know that you can finally reward those people for their hard work: the Fan Funding feature has launched in Australia, Japan, Mexico and the US. If a video host sets up a virtual tip jar, you can use your Google Wallet account (including any attached credit cards) to contribute right from a video page or the Android app. You can specify any amount you like, although YouTube will take a small cut to handle the deal; in the US, it's five percent of your donation plus another 21 cents. Support is coming to both other countries and iOS users soon, so don't despair if you can't contribute to your favorite channel just yet.

[Image credit: Rego Korosi, Flickr]

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LG G Watch R

One of the biggest gripes of smartwatch ownership is the (usual) dependency on your smartphone; do you really want to carry two devices when you're going out for a run? If you're an Android Wear fan, you won't have to in the near future. Google tells CNET that "several" updates are coming to its wearable platform before the end of the year, some of which will let you cut the figurative cord. Bluetooth headset support will let you put some music on the watch to listen at any time. GPS support will let you map your run while leaving your phone at home, although you'll logically need a watch with position tracking built-in -- in other words, don't expect it to show up on your early G Watch or Gear Live.

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First came synths, samplers and drum machines. Then computers caught up, and could do much of the same stuff, for much less money (and in much less space). But, humans like to "play" things, so we then we got MIDI controllers. Now, the circle is closing -- the current trend is software-specific controllers. Example? The new Komplete Kontrol S series of keyboards from industry giant Native Instruments. Komplete is the company's, erm, comprehensive music production software package (drums, sample, sounds, synths... everything). It contains some of the most used virtual instruments on the market (Massive, for example, is behind a good chunk of Dubstep sounds).

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Albums worth of photos and scattered receipts may serve as breadcrumbs when you're trying to revisit your travels, but they're far from an ideal solution. MapHook has an alternative, though, with its free Android and iOS app that lets you tag your stops on a map, add photos, video and notes about what you saw and even share the trip with close friends or the general public. Not only can you get insights from other travelers, but MapHook is also powered by sources like Yelp, Foursquare, Wikipedia, Groupon and more. You'll have tips, deals and details on local hot spots and points of interest to enhance your adventure. To help one lucky Engadget reader get started, MapHook has even provided a new HTC One M8. All you need to do is head down to the Rafflecopter widget below for up to three chances at winning. It'll go a long way towards helping you remember that place you went that one time.

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GERMAN-ELECTRONICS-ENTERTAINMENT-LIFESTYLE-IT-FAIR-IFA

IFA is one of the largest consumer electronics trade shows in the world, and it's also one of the most unique. The annual show, held this week in Berlin, has a knack for announcing new washing machines, sewing machines and kitchen appliances alongside the latest smartphones, smartwatches and tablets. Here at Engadget, we're primarily focused on the latter (though who doesn't love a free fruit smoothie sample from time to time?), and there's a lot to cover. Let's head straight into what new gadgets and devices we can expect to see announced at this week's event.

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Epson Runsense

How do you know when wrist-worn technology is officially a trend? When a brand best known for its printers gets in on the action. As promised, Epson is launching its first wrist-based wearables, and they're all about improving your fitness. Each line delivers a slight twist on a familiar formula. The Runsense GPS watch range (shown above) can track your running even if it loses signal thanks to stride sensors on some models, and lasts for a healthy 30 hours of continuous tracking; you may not need to recharge for days. The Pulsense line, meanwhile, monitors your heart rate, activity and sleep quality using a blend of optical and motion sensors. You theoretically never have to take the tracker off, although the 36-hour battery suggests you'll be doing that quite often.

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Despite Intel's best efforts, ARM remains the undisputed king of the mobile world, but another chip design house, just 51 miles down the road, is hoping to change that. Imagination Technologies, the outfit famous for its PowerVR mobile graphics tech, wants to knock its better-known rival off its perch with a new 64-bit MIPS chip. The Warrior I6400 promises to be a low-power, high-performance CPU for smartphones, tablets and internet of things devices that, the company claims, has the "technical superiority" over its competition. Since Android L will support silicon of this kind, Imagination is hoping that smartphone manufacturers will consider ditching ARM chips in favor of the plucky challenger. What does this mean for the consumer? Hopefully, faster devices, less power drain and a whole new topic where people can argue the merits of one architecture against the other.

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Man, [insert movie name here] on Netflix was awesome, wasn't it? Plenty of thoughtful action with just a smidge of the sappy stuff, and it didn't feel too ham-fisted either. As it turns out, Netflix doesn't just want you to recommend the film to your friends next time you see them -- the company teamed up with Facebook (again) so you can spread the good word just as soon as the show is over. The new sharing feature just went live today on just about nearly every platform that matters, including the Netflix site itself, iOS devices, PS3, Xbox, and a whole of host unspecified set-top boxes and smart TVs. Sorry Android fanatics, we're sure your time will come soon. In typical Netflix fashion, the process is pretty unobtrusive, too: once you've connected your Facebook and Netflix accounts, you'll able to choose exactly which friends your recommendation goes out to. If they opted to link their accounts in the same way, they'll get a notification the next time the log into Netflix; otherwise it gets routed to them in the form of a Facebook message. It's a shame Troll 2 isn't available anymore, because we'd probably go a little nuts recommending it to everyone.

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Uber Car

Despite putting the brakes on injunctions in both Berlin and Hamburg, Uber has once again felt the effects of a ban, but this time it's effective on a national level. Earlier today, a court in Frankfurt ruled that the car-hailing service doesn't have the necessary permits or insurance under German law. Despite facing a potential €250,000 fine for each unsanctioned journey and the risk that its directors could face time behind bars, Uber says the ban is unenforceable and has pledged to continue picking up passengers while it launches an appeal. Industry body Taxi Deutschland is happy with the ruling, though, describing Uber as a "form of locust share-economy" and also adding that smartphone ratings should not replace proper accreditation by authorities. The ruling comes just days after the company announced its intention to double capacity in the country by year-end. Despite today's court action hanging over its head, even the threat of a national ban doesn't appear to have distracted Uber from meeting its goal.

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Sonos has made a name for itself as a wireless home audio system. The problem is -- up until today -- that you still needed to plug something into the router (one of your speakers, or a "Bridge" device). What's new today? Sonos has come good on its promise, letting you drop that pesky "last cable" -- ignoring power leads, of course -- completely (excluding Sonos 3.1 and 5.1 cinema setups). The update means you can set up your Sonos system on your home WiFi network just like your phone, TV or anything else. Via the mobile app, punch in the credentials, and let all your Sonos speakers sort themselves out. You're still encouraged to use a Bridge if you have multiple devices and want to guarantee a more robust connection between them, though. Which brings us neatly on to "Boost," a new souped-up hub, that Sonos has announced it'll introduce later this year for "the most challenging home WiFi environments" -- paradoxically, that's probably baller-style cribs and basement conversions alike. No word on price for Boost, but depending where how you live, you might not want to chuck that CAT5 just yet. Read in for instructions on testing this with your existing set-up (don't just pull the cable).

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