Would Samsung really strap a 10X optical zoom and 16MP sensor to the back of a mid-range smartphone?
With the Galaxy S4 launch now mostly over and done with, Samsung rumormongers have turned their attention to the company's summer and fall product line-up. The most intriguing of these is a device rumored to go by the name 'Galaxy S4 Zoom.' Originally broken by SamMobile, initial reports suggested the 'Zoom' would be a mid-range handset with a 4.3-inch qHD SuperAMOLED screen on the front and a 16-megapixel camera strapped to the back. But that's not even the craziest part.
Could the XT1058 be the XFON we're all waiting to see? This sketch of the rear from the FCC makes us think so.
About a week ago, we got a fairly decent look at an AT&T branded phone from Motorola, labeled the XFON. It certainly resembles an earlier leak from Vietnam, but there was no information to go along with the pictures. Zero. Zilch. Nada.
That might have changed this evening, as the Motorola XT1058 has landed at the FCC, and a quick breeze through the documents tells us a little about what we're looking at. The phone will have Bluetooth 4.0, NFC capabilities, 802.11ac Wifi, and carriers AT&T's LTE bands. It doesn't take much imagination to connect this with the AT&T XFON we saw last week.
Other than what you're reading above, we don't know anything about this one. The timing is certainly convenient for a showing at Google I/O, but nobody can know exactly when -- or if -- we'll see this one. My gut tells me it's soon, though, and it's high time Motorola delivered another high-end GSM Android phone. If this is to debut at Google I/O, we should know in a few short days.
We're about to hit the road for San Francisco and Google I/O. So it's time for some predictions. Plus, we gab about the all-new Android Central app, rap on the Galaxy S4, and tackle some great voicemails. Join us!
It may be on the slow track, but the Xoom LTE is set to receive Jelly Bean nearly a year after its ICS update
As it tends to do shortly before releasing an official update, Motorola is sending out "soak test" invitations to owners of the Verizon Xoom LTE for an impending Jelly Bean update. The soak test is usually the final line of testing with a slightly wider number of users before an update is pushed out for general availability. While it doesn't guarantee an immediate release to everyone, it's a pretty good sign. The soak test invite refers to "Jelly Bean" nondescriptly, but we have to assume this will just be a bump to Android 4.1 rather than 4.2.
We're not going to shun an update of any kind though, as a jump to Jelly Bean brings a whole bunch of welcomed improvements. If you're part of the Motorola Feedback Network, be sure to check your email and see if you've received an invite as well. Otherwise, keep an eye out for the official update to be hitting devices sooner rather than later.
Rollout starting in Asia via OTA or Kies, other markets to follow in due time
Samsung's mid-sized tablet offering from 2012, the Galaxy Tab 7.7, is seeing a Jelly Bean update start rolling out starting today in select markets. Users of the 3G version of the Tab 7.7 in Asia -- Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines and Malaysia so far -- have been updating their devices both OTA (Over The Air) and through the Samsung Kies desktop software to Android 4.1.2. There's no complete changelog for the update at this point as its rolling out slowly, but we all know the serious improvements in Jelly Bean such as Google Now and Project Butter will be on-board.
As for a timetable on the Verizon model of the Tab 7.7 receiving an update, we haven't got a clue. Additional time testing may put this one on the back burner for some time, especially considering the rollout has only started in one region at this point.
Shipments to international backers will continue ramping up over time to meet estimates
In its weekly update to early Kickstarter backers, OUYA has laid out encouraging numbers for the current status of the new consoles shipping out. To date, a full 65-percent of the consoles have been shipped, which is ahead of the projected schedule as has been the case since late April. 60-percent of the consoles shipped this week were to international backers, which will help get them caught up with shipments headed to North America, and OUYA says that international shipments are ramping up to meet estimates.
Limited Edition versions of the OUYA are a bit behind schedule, but every one is expected to have shipped by two weeks from today. It's a slow but steady progression -- one with a lot of learning experiences, no doubt -- getting this many consoles out to those who helped fund the initial Kickstarter process. Retail units of the console are still expected to hit shelves by late June.
2 weeks ago
The Chrome developers are ready to take it up a notch at Google I/O
What's in the boxes isn't nearly as important as what them being there means
Look at that pallet of swag. Some people think it may be a pile of Chrome devices to give to attendees, others think it's T-shirts and some are guessing it's box after box of fancy pens. Alex is certain that it's "so many bags of Doritos." I'm not particularly concerned about what it is (don't go to Google I/O for the swag), but what it means.
Chrome OS is due for some serious loving from Google. It's been progressing along nicely, but it's high time that it gets some of the special treatment we saw Android get way back when the Nexus One came out with Eclair. Remember how much better Android became -- and so quickly -- once Google started focusing on it? Yeah. Let's do that with Chrome. T-shirts and Chromebooks (or Doritos) will get us excited, but I'm really excited about what we'll see at the keynote and in the developer sessions.
Nightly builds to begin rolling out "relatively soon" for both GSM and Sprint models of the One
With both a post on its official Google+ page and new thread in the HTC One forums at XDA, CyanogenMod has announced that CM10.1 nightlies are beginning to roll out for all models of the HTC One. Whether you have a GSM model or one running on Sprint, you can expect the first builds to show up on the get.cm site "relatively soon". These things take time, so while you're waiting you can follow the instructions from the forum post to make sure your device is ready. If you're running a GSM model you'll of course have to unlock the device via HTCDev, as well as have all of the downloads ready to flash a custom recovery and push all of the files over.
We're sure there are a whole lot of you that are ready to get cracking on some custom ROMs for your own HTC One, but following the right process will always help you in the long run. If you're unsure, you can always consult the forums and ask some questions before you dive in.
Even when counting laptops and tablets, Android powers 59-percent of all devices shipped in Q1
We often get glimpses into how well Android is performing in terms of shipments compared to other mobile competitors such as iOS and Windows Phone, but it turns out Android fares extremely favorably against mobile devices of all kinds. According to analysis by Canalys, of all "smart mobile devices" -- including smart phones, tablets and laptops -- shipped in Q1 2013, Android was the operating system of choice on 59.5-percent of them. That means that even when factoring in Apple laptops running Mac OS X and Windows-based laptops into Apple and Microsoft's numbers, Android is still a majority of all devices shipped. Canalys estimates that 183.7 million Android devices were shipped in the quarter, dramatically higher than apple's 59.6 million and Microsoft's 55.9 million.
As you would expect, things break down favorably in the manufacturer charts for Samsung, which supplied 82.2 million of those devices (keeping in mind they make Windows laptops also) even without sales of the Galaxy S4 being counted because it had not yet gone on sale in Q1. As if those crazy Android activation numbers we keep seeing weren't enough of an indication, it should be clear now that Android is genuinely dominating the mobile landscape.
Here's one you don't see every day. I've had this Samsung BT S Pen on my desk for months now. It's a larger S Pen than you get with the Galaxy Note 2 or Note tablets, and it also serves as a Bluetooth headset. Not a particularly great one -- I've tried it -- but it at least works.
You know the drill. Leave a comment on this post, and we'll pick a winner after midnight EDT tonight. We'll announce all the winners later this week.