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3 years ago

Google working with Mastercard and Citigroup to make NFC payments a reality

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Google has begun working with Mastercard and Citigroup to make NFC mobile payments a reality. NFC, or near-field communication, was touted by Eric Schmidt back in December of last year when Google's flagship device, the Nexus S, was announced. The contact-less payment system would allow customers to simply tap or wave their NFC supported mobile device to make payments at stores that support the new technology. Retail giant, Wal-Mart, has also confirmed that they have met with Google to begin preliminary discussions about the new tech.

Additionally, VeriFone Systems is working to bring more contact-less supported readers to merchants. Contact-less payment machines and credit cards have been around for years now, but most consumers aren't aware of it -- and if they are, most have concerns about sending confidential information over the air. "Because it's contact-less there's a perception people can grab it from thin air, but it's actually a more sophisticated technology than credit cards with a magnetic stripe, making it more difficult to steal a consumer's payment information," said Nick Holland, a mobile-transactions analyst at Yankee Group.

Interestingly enough, just last week at CTIA's annual event, none of the phones announced sports NFC. If Google and credit card companies are moving forward with this, who's making the devices? And when? Not everyone has a Nexus S, you know. Or maybe, this whole thing is just too far off from becoming mainstream and OEMs are just waiting? What do you guys and gals think? [The Wall Street Journal]

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3 years ago

Hands-on with Gingerbread on Droid X

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Android 2.3.3 leaked out for the Droid X and Droid 2 earlier tonight, and we just had to take it for a spin, especially given that it has an all new skin atop it. We even hesitate to call it Blur, because it's definitely better than the old Motoblur and not-a-Blur from days gone by.

There's a proper dock now, with three customizable icons. That's right, you can put whatever you want in there, which is the way it should be. But by default, Motorola gives you the phone dialer, e-mail and text messages, which is much better than the dialer and contacts we had before.

The app drawer also is greatly improved. You can now make groups of applications within the drawer. And the first thing we're going to do with it is make a group of icons that excludes all the VCAST stuff that's on the phone, and maybe the stub apps for NFS Shift and Madden 2011. For those of you who don't root and kill unwanted apps, this is a nice, safe way to get the bloatware out of sight.

The menus have a new look, too, which is OK by us.

Anyhoo, peep the video after the break. We're going to give it a go for a few more days, but our initial impression is pretty good. Give it a shot, or sit back and wait for the over-the-air update, whenever that is. More on the update in the Android Central Forums

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3 years ago

Droid X and Droid 2 get leaked Gingerbread builds with updated MotoBlur

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If you are still holding on to your Motorola Droid 2 or Motorola Droid X, and have been hoping and praying for a Gingerbread build, your prayers have been answered tonight. The folks at My Droid World have landed their hands on a leak, that brings an updated MotoBlur to the table, along with the OS update. So, if you have either of these devices, you can update to this leak, which is unfortunately not rooted currently. Both of the devices have been confirmed to be able to be downgraded via SBF if you want to at a later time to await the official. Delay no longer, and get to downloading. [Droid 2 / Droid X via MyDroidWorld]

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3 years ago

The Week in Android News

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If you haven't been actively reading the news from the past week, you probably missed a whole lot of fun and exciting news. Last week Phil and team hit the road and went to Orlando, Fl to bring us all the news and hands on coverage from CTIA 2011. With all the new device announcements, Droid X bootloader drama, and more about running Android apps on the BlackBerry PlayBook, you will certainly want to check out what you may have missed below.

General News

Hardware News

Tablet News

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3 years ago

Wifi-only Xoom gets its own root method

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Root access is now available on the just-released Wifi-only Motorola Xoom, thanks to some enterprising XDA members. The rooting process involves using the Android SDK, as well as a fair amount of command-line wizardry, so it's certainly not for the feint-hearted. You'll also be on your own if something goes wrong, as rooting will almost certainly void your warranty.

Still, if you think the prospect of owning a rooted Honeycomb tablet is worth the risk of potentially owning a bricked Honeycomb tablet, then hit the source link to find a complete list of files, along with rooting instructions.

If you're interested in rooting your Verizon-branded Xoom, be sure to check our earlier post for instructions. [XDA]

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3 years ago

HTC Flyer heading to T-Mobile USA?

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Although T-Mobile USA thus far has been pushing the LG G-Slate, it appears as though the HTC Flyer will be heading that way at some point, too. Looking at a few leaked images, T-Mobile and HTC are certainly pushing the usage of HTC Scribe in their advertising, which to us is a good thing, as it will help differentiate the Flyer from the other swarms of tablets popping up. 

No launch dates are to found in the details, but given the fact the EVO View 4G from Sprint will be hitting the market come Summer we're guessing T-Mobile will try to follow up with their release of the HTC Flyer as soon as possible to capture anyone who may looking to possibly jump ship. Head on past the break for a few more images. [Pocketnow]

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3 years ago

Words with Friends updated, fixes 'force close' problems

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Zynga has released an update for the Android version of its social puzzle game Words with Friends, fixing one particularly annoying bug which caused the game to force-close at startup or at random on a number of devices.

Head to the Android Market to grab the update to the new version 3.28. If you've not yet tried Words with Friends, you can find a handy Market link and QR code after the jump.

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3 years ago

Official Android 2.3 Gingerbread ROM leaks out for Samsung Galaxy S

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The race is on to see which device will be the first to get an official upgrade to Android 2.3 Gingerbread, and a new ROM has leaked out for the Euro version of the Samsung Galaxy S (that's the I9000 for you folks playing at home). It's not actually being pushed out just yet, but reportedly it's what you'll get if your phone gets sent in for warranty work.

And, no, this isn't what those of us in the states are waiting on -- you'll need the the official upgrade from your respective carrier -- or the Froyo update, first, if you're still waiting on that.

The the full walkthrough of the leaked Gingerbread ROM after the break, and get your download, plus full instructions, at the source link. [XDA Developers]

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3 years ago

Wifi-only Motorola Xoom officially available today

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If you have been waiting for the Wifi-only version of the Motorola Xoom to launch officially, today is your lucky day. Of course, some places were selling them early, and one of our readers did some great hands-on time with his device, but the Wifi-only Xoom is now available to all to purchase. If you make your way out today to pick one up, be sure to hop in the forums and share your experience and everything else with us. [Motorola]

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