Three 4G LTE now live 'in 36 large towns and cities'
Following the completion of its staged 4G rollout, Three UK says all of its customers now have access to its LTE network. The operator says some 1.7 million of its customers are already using 4G-capable devices, and are set for a "seamless transition" to the faster network. As previously announced, all Three customers with a capable device will get access to 4G at no extra cost.
Three claims its LTE network is now operational in 36 large towns and cities, including London, Birmingham, Manchester, Reading and Liverpool. Looking ahead, the operator aims to have 50 cities and 200+ towns covered by the end of this year, and over 98 percent UK population coverage by the end of 2015.
Samsung walked away from Mobile World Congress this week with the coveted Best Mobile Device award, but not for the Galaxy S5. Instead, its latest wearable, the Gear Fit, claimed the accolade and stole the show. The Gear Fit is an interesting and exciting device, crossing a smartwatch and a fitness band with a pretty stunning curved Super AMOLED display.
The award was announced on the final day of the show in which we saw a number of big device announcements from the likes of Samsung and Sony among others. We managed to grab some hands on time with the Gear Fit – alongside the Gear 2 – earlier in the week, and you'll find that right after the break.
What do you do if you're stuck in traffic on the way to an important meeting on day one of Mobile World Congress? If you're HTC CEO Peter Chou, you might think on your feet and seek help from a local motorcyclist. According to the company's official blog, the HTC boss found his cab gridlocked in traffic on the morning of Feb. 24, when he was on his way to a meeting at the Fira de Barcelona. Determined not to miss his appointment, Chou instructed his cab to honk at a passing biker before asking him for a lift to the MWC venue. Ten minutes later, HTC's CEO arrived safely at the Fira on the back of the man's green Honda Scoopy.
But the biker didn't accept the cash Peter Chou was offering for the favor, and now Chou is determined to track him down and see that he's properly rewarded. So HTC is now trying to locate "a good-looking man, 45-50 years old, riding a Green Honda Scoopy with a yellow plate," between 08:24 and 08:35 on the morning of Monday, Feb. 24. If that's you, or you know who it might be, HTC wants you to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or use the hashtag #HTCseeksBiker on Twitter and Facebook.
Sony Bluetooth speaker and new noise-cancelling earbuds bundled to sweeten the deal
Sony's newly announced Xperia Z2 isn't scheduled to go on sale for a little while yet, but one UK retailer is already offering a pretty sweet audio bundle with pre-orders. Clove Technology has put the Xperia Z2 up for pre-order at £550 inclusive of VAT, and for that you also get a Sony Bluetooth speaker and a pair of its new noise cancelling earbuds.
We managed to take a quick look – although no listen – at the earbuds during a Mobile World Congress briefing in Barcelona, and Sony seems pretty happy with them. Regardless, the bundle is worth a reported £120, so if you're looking at picking up an Xperia Z2 then it might be the way to go.
New Sony phones being bundled with another item aren't uncommon. Previous releases have seen the Smartwatch 2 thrown in as well, and as pre-orders open up elsewhere it'll be interesting to see what else we can pick up. Clove has all three colors in stock, and is slating April 7 as the current availability date. This will be subject to change, but gives us something to go on at this point.
Motorola's updates continue today, and next on the list is Active Display. One of our favorite features from the Moto X (and new Droid phones) will now honor the vibration settings. You can toggle them on and off in sound section of the settings menu.
Google Voice Search has been slowlyrolling out to the Google Chrome browser for some time now, and now the beta version is just listening for your command. The listening search box is present on Google.com and in new blank tabs, and just like with the Google Now Launcher it is always listening for the command "Ok Google". Say that and Google Voice Search springs to life, waiting for you to perform a search, set a timer, or whatever else it is you want to do through Google.
The latest beta version has the option enabled, though according to the Google Chrome Blog the feature "will be rolled out to English (U.S.) users on Windows, Mac and Linux over the next few days, with support for additional languages and Chrome OS coming soon."
All you need is the latest Chrome beta for your hands-free Googling, and you can download that right here
If you're rocking a Motorola phone that supports Motorola Assist — that's basically the Moto X, Moto G and the new Droid phones — you've got an update waiting for you today. It's basically bugfixes and improvements, but one you'll want to get.
Here's the deal:
If you have audio issues with Drive Mode while connected to a Bluetooth device, you'll get a little troubleshooting help.
And if you're in an "available" meeting status, meeting mode won't fire off. (Which makes sense.)
Fitness trackers have been improving steadily over the past few years, but if the latest gadget lives up to its lofty claims, they may have met their match in Moov. The newly-announced Moov fitness gadget aims to be more than just a fitness tracker, it wants to be your fitness coach. The problem with most fitness trackers is their passive nature. They simply sit on your wrist, collecting data, and leave it up to you to parse what it means.
Moov, on the other hand, takes that data, relays it to your phone for processing, and uses what it knows about you and your goals coach you on exercising better. It wants you to be stronger and it wants you to be safer. Moov worked with real athletes and trainers to design Moov's algorithms and ideal forms. By know how the pros do it, Moov can instruct you on how to run, box, swim, bike, and exercise like them. It can even adjust to your known injuries, coaching you to adjust your stride to avoid aggravating that knee injury from your intramural frisbee days. Moov is about precision, whereas other fitness trackers tend to be about generalization.
Toggled in quick settings, new feature gives quick access to five favorite apps
In all the commotion over finger scanners, water resistance and 16-megapixel cameras, one neat new multitasking feature on the Samsung Galaxy S5 has been easy to overlook. Nevertheless, the GS5's "Toolbox" feature could be particularly useful if you're hopping between the same few apps on a regular basis. Enabled in the quick settings area, Toolbox is a floating circle with three dots that sits on top of every thing else running on the phone. Tap it and it'll expand to show up to five favorite apps, configurable through Settings > Toolbox.
We've got a quick video walkthrough of Toolbox on the Galaxy S5 up top.
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