Pokémon Go goes live in PH, 14 other countries in Asia, Oceania



Put on your walking shoes, and head to the gym — the pokémon gym that is.

After a long wait, Pokémon Go is now officially available in the Philippines. The hit smartphone game is already available on iOS and Android. Those who own an iPhone can get it from the App Store. If the app doesn’t show up on your Android phone, you can hit this Play Store link.

But, regardless, the game is already playable locally, with pokéstops and pokémon gyms and pokémon populating the vacinity of this author’s address.

Besides the Philippines, Pokémon Go is now also live in 14 other countries in Asia and Oceania. Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Papau New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, and Palau are all included in the rollout.

The news comes after Niantic Labs, the developer of Pokémon Go, announced the game has expanded to countries in Central and South America, including Brazil where the 2016 Rio Olympics is being held.

So, what are you waiting for? Go and catch some pokémon. Oh, and if you need tips and tricks to get you started on the path to catching them all, swing by this page. New to Pokémon? Here are 20 things you should know about the franchise.

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Here’s how to share your Spotify Wrapped 2023 with everyone

Also available on desktop for the first time ever



Psst. It’s that time of the year again. If you’ve been on social media lately, you might have noticed the start of Spotify Wrapped posts. Everyone is keen to share which songs they were obsessed over this entire year. If you want to join in the fun, here’s how you can share your top songs and artists for the year.

Starting today, Spotify Wrapped is now available. As long as your app is updated, the yearly feature should already be available. You can find the button for your Wrapped right on your home screen.

Clicking on the feature will take you to the traditional story-like sequence showcasing your favorite music and when you listened to them. At the end of the sequence, you’ll get a variety of color options to share your list on social media. This year’s theme is more psychedelic, so you can show off a lot more color for your feed.

Additionally, after you view the sequence (and during, for your most listened-to artist), you can access special messages shot by your most played artists as a thank you for supporting them throughout the year. The top artist will get a special spot in your stories, too.

Besides the usual way of viewing your Wrapped on mobile, Spotify is also making Wrapped 2023 available on desktop for the first time ever. The desktop version isn’t really new as it still offers the same story sequence, though. Still, it’s a good addition if you prefer using Spotify on a PC.

SEE ALSO: Spotify’s Supremium subscription hints more features coming

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Sunbird shuts down its Android-to-iMessage app

Nothing Chats is in danger



Last week’s headlines were all about iMessage. To start, Carl Pei’s Nothing suddenly announced an Android-based bridge between iMessage and RCS. However, the upcoming service was almost immediately criticized for security concerns, prompting a delay announced over the weekend. Now, Nothing Chats is seemingly gone for good.

Soon after the scrutiny forced Nothing to pull its beta from circulation, Sunbird has shut down its own app. Now, Sunbird’s shutdown is especially crucial for Nothing’s iMessage bridge. Carl Pei’s app was going to use Sunbird’s platform as a base.

As spotted by 9to5Google, the messaging app is no longer available on the Play Store. According to Sunbird users, the app was temporarily shut down to address the ongoing security concerns. The company has not addressed if (or when) the service will come back online.

Despite claiming the availability of end-to-end encryption, Sunbird lacked the standard of security that it promised users. For one, user data was apparently stored in an external server outside of the company. Additionally, other users, especially those with malicious intentions, could easily read through sent messages. It was a security nightmare.

Nothing, in response to the criticisms, elected to block downloads for its service. Now, Sunbird is gone, too. Nothing’s efforts to bridge the two platforms is in limbo. Even if Sunbird comes back, there’s no guarantee that Carl Pei will continue working with the company.

Additionally, the service might soon be redundant anyway. After Nothing’s announcement, Apple surprisingly announced that support for RCS is coming to iOS next year, apparently eliminating the need for a third-party bridge.

SEE ALSO: Apple is finally solving its green bubble problem

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GCash unveils plans for international, B2B expansion

At the Singapore FinTech Festival 2023



The past few months have been tremendous for GCash’s direction, and the e-wallet app has just unveiled its broader plans at the Singapore Fintech Festival 2023.

During the gathering, GCash presented a new app feature where users can view real-time foreign exchange rates in selected countries like Singapore, Japan, and the United States.

This development comes just a week after it was bared that GCash has partnered with Alipay+ to deliver cashless payments in 17 countries.

To date, the e-wallet can be used for cashless transactions in over 80 million merchants across 200 countries, giving users a convenient payment option when traveling abroad.

Last month, it was also announced that GCash how has a physical Visa card offering which can be used for POS terminals.

According to GCash president and CEO Martha Sazon, the e-wallet is exploring providing digital financial services for enterprise clients as part of strengthening its B2B operations.

In the future, nano, micro, small, and medium enterprises can also expect GCash to provide a helping hand using its suite of innovative business solutions.

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