RIM released this charger last year with the launch of the BlackBerry PlayBook, and to keep the juices flowing with the bigger battery they cranked up the charging rate to 1.8 amps (most phone chargers that ship in the box tend to be in the 750 mAh to 1 amp range). We quickly put it to the test on our BlackBerry Smartphones and found we could charge them almost twice as fast!
On Android Central Podcast 98 we found out that both AC's Jerry Hildenbrand and Chris Parsons have been using this same charger with their microUSB Android devices for a long time now with great success. If you're going to spend the money on a spare charger, you might as well invest in one that charges at a higher amperage rate. Not every phone will allow for rapid charging, but for the ones that do you'll be glad you have a charger that takes advantage of it (and no, you won't damage your phone even if it doesn't make use of the higher amperage). In the last two days I've already receiveda hand full of tweets and emails from Android Central podcast listeners who went out and bought the BlackBerry Premium Charger after listening to the show and they are loving it. Good stuff.
Win a Free Charger Courtesy of CrackBerry Kevin: The BlackBerry Premium Charger has a MSRP of $39.99 but you can get it for a lot less at ShopAndroid.com. But just to share some Mobile Nations World Tour love, I'm going to give a lucky Android Central member a chance to win one for free, on me. To enter, just leave a comment to this post and you're in. Contest ends this Sunday at Midnight PT. Good luck.
If you've just blown £500 or so on a shiny new Samsung Galaxy S III (or committed to a new 24-month contract to get a subsidized model), you'll want to do everything you can to prevent it from knocks and scrapes. One of the first cases to appear for the S III on the European launch day was the official clear TPU case, manufactured by Anymode. This is a basic flexible plastic shell that matches the curved design of the S III, and features raised areas along the sides to allow easy pressing of the power button and volume rocker. And you've also got cut-outs for the LED flash, camera, rear speaker, mics, headphone jack and microUSB port. The case extends around the edge of the device, covering the corners, which are most susceptible to damage from falls or sudden impacts.
Texture-wise, the case is typical of most TPU offerings -- it's flexible and a little plasticky, without awkward rubber-like feeling that characterizes some silicone cases. Its flexibility means it's easy enough to put on or remove from the phone, while the patterned area inside the case grips the back of the phone securely to avoid slippage.
As it's transparent, you won't be upsetting the aesthetics of the Galaxy S III too much. The extra thickness isn't all that noticeable during regular use, or when the two are pocketed. Our only design concern stems from the slightly rough edges of the case, likely caused by the molding process, though that's true of many cases of this kind.
The clear TPU case for the Samsung Galaxy S III is available for around £15 from retailers in the UK. We've got more photos after the break.
With the popularity of phone-tablet hybrids like the Samsung Galaxy Note -- to say nothing of actual tablets -- it's time to take a look at that long-controversial accessory -- the stylus. Back in the days of resistive touchscreens, these guys were all but necessary for making a smartphone useful. But things change, and the stylus found itself relegated to mostly accessory status. But that doesn't mean it's not still useful.
So this week you'll see a series of reviews on our favorite pen-like accessory, and we might even give away a few, with some help from our pals at ShopAndroid.com. Get your writing hand ready, folks. It's stylus time!
While sounding off about my HTC One X experiences during Thursday's Android Central Podcast, I brought up the topic of accessories. When it comes to BlackBerry, I have my list of favorites, and usually go on a shopping spree after I upgrade to a new phone. A pair of charging stands (need for both nightstand and office desk), a case or skin or screen protector, car mount, spare batteries, extra chargers (I tend to leave them in hotels)... you get the picture, I'm a bit of an accessory junkie. For some items I prefer going OEM while for other items I prefer going third party.
This is the first time I'm really going all-in on an Android phone, and it's a fresh start for me on the accessory front. I took a stroll through ShopAndroid.com today and loaded some items up into the cart, but figured before checking out I should check in with the Android Central community and get their input. I could tell from the comments to my Mobile Nations World Tour post that there are a lot of smart people on this site with a lot of strong opinions. So help me out here. What are the must-have accessories that will help me get the most out of the Android experience?
Don't be shy. Let me know in the comments. I lucked in by already owning a matching pair of Beats for my One X, but that's all I've got.
This one is a far cry in appearance from Motorola's efforts with the Lapdock. The newly announced Clamcase Clambook quite simply wants to bring a laptop experience to your Android smartphone. Bearing more than a passing resemblance to the Macbook Air and containing a 16:9 widescreen display, by connecting to your phone via an MHL adaptor it brings full native keyboard and trackpad capabilities with it. As well as this, it will charge your phone while it is docked.
The Clambook also proudly boasts that it will work with Android 4.0, and the keyboard has dedicated home, app switching and back keys.
Motorola users can use the Clambook to launch the in-built Webtop functionality too. Exact details and device compatibility are still absent at this time, as is any idea on price. But, if you yearn for an Android powered laptop this could be the answer to your prayers.
The HTC Media Link HD (see our first-look video) has been available in some outlets for a little while now. But starting this Friday, AT&T will be selling the Wifi Direct device for $90. (Yes, that's the full retail packaging you see above. And, interestingly enough, it's been listed on AT&T's website before today. No matter.)
The Media Link HD is the second generation of the device that, in a nutshell, lets you easily sent content from your phone to your HDMI-enabled television. We'll have a full review in the coming days. But we've been using a prerelease unit for some weeks, and it really is as simple as swiping your fingers up the screen. Your homescreens, images, videos -- even games -- are automagically beamed to your television, live and in living color.
Peripheral makers Nyko have announced a partnership with NVIDIA and have unveiled a line of game controllers for use with Android tablets. The controllers, the Playpad and the Playpad Pro, are optimized for use with Tegra devices and should work flawlessly with the Tegra 3 chipset. Devices are also required to be running Android 3.0 and above with Bluetooth capabilities.
The controllers will be useable right from the outset, no rooting, hacking or tweaking is required. Through a free application too known as Playground, support for legacy apps that aren't optimized for Tegra devices will be possible as well providing they meet the necessary criteria.
The Playpad will be the smaller of the two devices, and will come with dual analog sliders, a carry case and a collapsible tablet stand. The Playpad Pro by contrast is a full sized gaming controller, with dual analog sticks, a D-pad, shoulder buttons and face buttons.
Good news, everyone! The elusive Samsung Galaxy Nexus accessories are now available directly from Google in the Google Play Store. (Where they should be!) Yeah, it's only been about six months or so since the phone was released, but we're not going to look this gift horse in the mouth.
Available are the Vehicle Dock -- that's the proper one with the pogo pins to keep you charged and not the janky "navigation" dock that only holds the phone -- and a pair of desktop docks. If a traditional landscape dock is your bag, it's there, with the same pogo pins for charging. Or if you need some high-def output, there's an HDMI dock in portrait orientation that uses the USB port for output and charging.
The vehicle and landscape desktop dock each cost $54, and the HDMI portrait desktop dock is $49. You can snag 'em all at the link below.
If you're a registered member here at Android Central then you know our forums always have a contest happening. And if you're not registered, well -- now is as good a time as any. This week's winners are as posted after the break, and if you were chosen watch your email as we'll be following up during the week. Stay tuned for more upcoming contests folks. Congrats to the winners!
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