2 years ago

ShopAndroid.com end of summer sale: Save a Sizzling 15% on ALL Android cases and Accessories!


As much as we hate to say it, summer is coming to an end. It's back to school, back to work, and depending where you live ... back to cold weather. We're going to keep the heat with us a little longer though thanks to some sizzling savings in our ShopAndroid.com End of Summer Sale!

Android Central readers can save 15 percent on all Android accessories for the next few days when using coupon code SS13 at checkout. We have tons of cases, batteries, chargers, Bluetooth accessories and more.

The sizzling savings won't last forever though, so take advantage while you can. The sale ends at Midnight PST on Sunday, Sept. 22.

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2 years ago

Chromecast update brings a few 'maintenance' fixes


Google this morning announced an update to the Chromecast stick that'll roll out over the next week. It's calling this "largely a maintenance release." Here's what's new:

  • Kernel update
  • Security fixes
  • Robustness improvements
  • Security enhancements

Find more in our Chromecast forums.

Source: Google Chrome Releases

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2 years ago

EverDock wants to be the one charging dock for every device you own


A simple universal dock with a few neat features seeks crowd funding

Well-made and nice-looking universal docks that work with a variety of devices are hard to come by, and the folks at FUZ Designs are hoping to solve that problem with a Kickstarter campaign to make the EverDock. The goal of EverDock is to provide a single docking solution that can work with any phone or tablet by providing a basic stand that can incorporate with any cord and connector of your choice.

The dock, which is made out of solid aluminum, has a channel underneath that can accommodate any plug, including standard MicroUSB, Apple Lightning or 30-pin and other similar multi-pin proprietary connectors from other manufacturers. The EverDock also takes advantage of micro-suction technology, meaning that the dock will stick to almost any surface and let you easily remove your phones or tablets without the dock moving.

If you choose to back the project on Kickstarter, you'll have a variety of options. The cheapest way to get in will be with an "Early-bird Special" at $39 for a silver EverDock or $59 for a silver EverDock Duo (that holds two devices). Upwards from there, you'll find options for two and three packs of EverDocks and EverDock Duos in a variety of color options as well. As for timing, assuming the project is funded FUZ Designs expects to ship the EverDock by the holidays.

You can find more information and a full description of the item at the source links below.

More: FUZ Designs; Kickstarter

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2 years ago

Mugen Power Case for the Nexus 4


Battery cases are big. This is, of course, because they are cases that contain not just your phone, but another battery with which you will charge your phone.

And so here we give you a quick look at the Mugen Power Case for the Nexus 4. It's a big battery case — 4,500 mAh and easily double the thickness of the Nexus 4. But it's also simple to remove (without you having to worry that your phone will go flying out. But unlike most battery cases, in which the phone slides onto the microUSB plug somehow to get its juice — Mugen opts for an external plug. It (mostly) tucks away into the soft-touch case when not in use. When you need that extra power, you unstow it, connect it to your phone and pray nobody sees what you've done.

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2 years ago

MiniSuit Keyboard Case for the Nexus 7 (2013)


The idea of a physical keyboard on a 7-inch tablet is a questionable one, but this case makes us consider the proposition more seriously

The Nexus 7 (and all 7-inch tablets, really) are generally better suited for on-screen keyboard input than their 10-inch counterparts, but what if you want to push the capabilities of your tablet more towards a laptop? We've seen wireless keyboards of all shapes and styles for many different devices, but ones that are made to fit a 7-inch tablet walk a very fine line of staying compact without compromising usability.

MiniSuit has had a keyboard folio-style case for the Nexus 7 (2012) on the market for some time now, and has updated the line for the 2013 revision of the tablet. It's a relatively compact, nice-looking and well-made case that also pulls double duty as a full-featured — but hardly full-sized — keyboard accessory. Hang with us after the break where we take a closer look at the MiniSuit Keyboard Case for the Nexus 7 (2013).

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2 years ago

Linquet wants to remove the word lost from your vocabulary


We hear a lot about the "Internet of things". One day, everything will be connected to everything else, and the world will be a better place. At least that's what they tell us, right? Well the folks at Linquet have an example, and I think they just might have it right.

They're tiny tags — slightly bigger than a quarter — that communicate with your smartphone and prevent you from losing your stuff. There are lots of gadgets that help you find your stuff, but Linquet tries to keep things from getting lost in the first place. You install the Linquet app on your phone, and set it to fire off an alarm on your phone and the tag if the two get too far apart. You can tell it how far is too far through the app, and the whole kit is customizable.

In addition, the system communicates with the cloud to help you track and find things that you did manage to lose. Maybe you were at the club and didn't hear the alarm. You can log into your Linqet account, find where the tag is, and go retrieve it — or delegate a friend to do it for you. It sounds pretty slick.

The folks behind the idea had a successful beta test, and now they're ready to go to final production. That's where they need your help. Starting today, you can pre-order a Linquet that will be delivered in December should the funding get all sorted out. You're not charged until it ships, so this is a little different from a Kickstarter campaign. The coolest part is the price. the tags themselves are free — you only pay for the monthly service at $2.99 each per month.

The system will work with Android phones that have Bluetooth Low Energy support (we've been telling you this was pretty cool) like the HTC One or the Galaxy S4, that run Android 4.3

We've got a product video and press release after the break, and for more details you'll want to follow the link below.

More: Linquet

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2 years ago

The LG G2 QuickWindow Case


LG's got a small line of accessories available with the G2, and chief among them is the QuickWindow Case. It follows the trend that LG actually started in 2012 with the Spectrum 2 on Verizon (what, you thought it was someone else?) — a folio-style case and cover that gives a peek at the display.

This latest iteration serves a couple purposes. First is to protect your phone. The QuickWindow Case is a thin shell that covers most of the G2 — and it does so with minimal thickness. It also protects most of the display, save for the window area. (That's another change from similar covers — this window is wide open, no plastic between you and the display.) And, finally, it brings a bit of functionality to the display without having to open the cover. 

Read on for a quick look at the LG G2 QuickWindow Case.

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2 years ago

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Flip Wallet


Our journey through the labyrinth that is Samsung's hall at the IFA conference in Berlin continues — we're getting there, I promise — with the Flip Wallet case for the Galaxy Note 3. We've already taken a look at the S View case, which sports the transparent window so you can still get information and interact with the phone while the case is closed — now here's a more traditional folio version.

The Flip Wallet is done up in the same sort of leatherette as the Note 3 itself (maybe even a little nicer — the feel of the Note 3 changes a little depending on which color you're handling), with the same stitching as well. There's a slot on the inside to hold business cards or a credit card if you want, and little plus and minus signs on the spine point you to the volume rocker, so you don't have to open the case to turn the music up. (Who turns music down, anyway?)

The Flip Wallet for the Galaxy Note 3 comes in a variety of colors — including, yes, pink. We've got more after the break.

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the new Galaxy Note 10.1 Book Cover


A basic protective cover for the 2014 edition Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

Samsung's unveiled a wide range of accessories alongside its new Note products at IFA 2013. We've already taken a look at the S View cover for the Galaxy Note 3, and now it's time to get acquainted with the Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) book cover. Relatively simple in design, the book cover bears a slight resemblance to Apple's smart covers, though there's no magnetic attachment, and you'll have difficulty using it for anything besides keeping the screen clear of knocks and scratches.

It'll also be available in six color options — black, white, orange, pink, green and blue. Check past the break for more hands-on photos.

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Gamepad on the Galaxy Note 3


Official accessory lets you turn your Galaxy Note 3 into a portable console

Despite its announcement around the time of the Galaxy S4 launch, the Samsung Gamepad still isn't available to buy. Nevertheless, we were able to track down the gaming-centric accessory on the IFA 2013 show floor and demonstrate it working with a selection of titles on the new Galaxy Note 3. Now slightly redesigned, with differently labelled buttons, the Gamepad we saw in Berlin had a dedicated "Game" button linking into a special games portal on the device. This pauses the current game and pops up a menu, allowing you to choose between compatible titles.

We played Prince of Persia, Sonic 4 Ep. 2 and Need for Speed Most Wanted on the Gamepad connected to a Galaxy Note 3, and performance was as fast and smooth as you'd expect form a Snapdragon 800 device. Some titles did give us issues on this preproduction setup though, with Virtua Tennis crashing at launch.

Connectivity is still handled over Bluetooth, meaning if you don't want to use the attached clip to to create a makeshift handheld console, you can use the Gamepad at a distance. In fact, we even saw the Note 3 linked up to a Samsung TV, with the pad being used as a console-style wireless controller.

Check the video after the break to see the Samsung Gamepad in action with the Galaxy Note 3. We've got more photos of the controller in use with the Note 3.

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2 years ago

Hands on with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 S-View case


The S-View case isn't new to Samsung, we saw one earlier this year with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S4. With the arrival of the Galaxy Note 3, the S-View case is back, and with the larger display size on the phone comes a larger window on the case. 

Beyond the time and the notification bar which you get with the Galaxy S4, the Galaxy Note 3 also shows the current weather information. It also has more than screen, and by swiping left from the bottom right corner you get to a secondary screen with some additional functions. From here you can control the media player, access Action Memo and even open the camera and take a photograph using the window as a viewfinder. 

As far as cases go, it's pretty cool. Head on past the break for a short hands on video. 

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2 years ago

Eyes on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 official cases


With a new Samsung phone comes a bunch of official cases, and the new Galaxy Note 3 is absolutely no exception. In the sprawling Samsung booth here in Berlin at IFA 2013, the range is on show for everyone to see, including the pretty interesting and nice looking S-View case. The range comes in a whole bunch of different colors, and there's even some special edition ones designed by Moschino and Nicholas Kirkwood. 

Click on past the break for a few more snaps of what's on offer.

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2 years ago

Sony QX10 lens camera now up for pre-orders at Amazon for $248 [Update - QX100, too for $498]


Deliveries start on September 27

Update: AC reader skippyrulezzz points out that the QX100 is now listed as well. The bigger sensor will cost a bit more, and it checks in at $498. Still the same September 27 date for shipping.

The Sony QX10 — that quirky lens camera that attaches to your smartphone we saw yesterday — is already listed for pre-order at Amazon. Checking in at $248, the lens attachment comes in both black and white, and other vendors have built starter kits with cases, wee little tripods and SD cards built around the camera.

AC reader Horaland H tells us that it ships September 17 in the UK, but it's a little more costly at $279. 

While the DX10 doesn't give you the power you get from something like a DSLR or good micro 4/3 camera (that lack of RAW image files is puzzling), for the average consumer they should take great pictures. Surely better than anything you would get from any other smartphone, no matter how many Lumapixels MegaPixels are on board.

If anyone's interested in having a play with one of these (guilty) hit the link below to check things out. No word on when to expect to see the bigger QX100 just yet.

Source: Amazon (QX10), (QX100). Thanks, Tony!

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2 years ago

Quick look: LG G Pad 8.3 cases


LG's reveals protective accessories alongside new tablet 

LG officially re-entered the Android tablet game at IFA 2013 today with the launch of the G Pad 8.3, and alongside it the Korean company unveiled a couple of accessories for the device. LG's protective cover for its new tablet comes in two parts — the first is a plastic shell for the device, but there's also a detachable magnetic front cover (think iPad Smart Cover) to keep the screen free of damage. And like Apple's cover its also possible to extend it around the back of the device to use as a stand — though in a slightly different way, as the case has a clip-out area to connect to the front cover.

We've got more photos of LG's cases after the break, including a bonus shot of a lone Thomas the Tank Engine cover found wandering the aisles of the LG booth here in Berlin.

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2 years ago

Heads-on with the Sony Head-Mounted Display for mobile


Sony brought their own headset to IFA 2013, so we strapped it on and took it for a spin

VR headsets are back in the news of late, primarily because of the Oculus Rift, but what we have here is something that Sony has cooked up. Right now it's known as the rather unimaginative Head Mounted Display, and while it will hook into your home entertainment system, we're more interested by this one, the one that hooks into your smartphone.

Essentially what you have is something that resembles a VR headset with a bunch of adjustable components to make it fit your own head size, and I have to say it was actually pretty comfortable. There's plenty of cushioning where it matters, and the whole get up sits pretty snug on your head.

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