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3 years ago

Google Now officially gets widgets in latest Google Search update

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Seems like it was only a couple days ago that we were tipped to home screen and Android 4.2 lock screen widgets for Google Now, and today that update has come, along with a few other trinkets.

First off is that widget. It works on a home screen or lock screen (the latter only if you've got Android 4.2). We not noticing any real customizable settings just yet -- sing out if you see any. But you can at least resize it on the home screen, and you might well need to if it tries to take up a full 4x4 spot by default.

Then there's support for movie passes from Fandango, as well as ratings from Rotten Tomatoes. If you're searching for a home, you'll get real-estate listings from Zillo. In the United States, you'll now see a music button when a song is playing in voice mode. And, as some of you have already noticed this week, there's now support for college sports. (Just in time for March Madness!)

Update: Google's got a blog post detailing the update here.

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

10 great fitness accessories in 2 minutes

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February is Fitness Month here at Mobile Nations, and thanks to our Android, BlackBerry, iOS, webOS, and Windows phones and tablets, we have a host of new options for getting in shape and staying healthy.

Regardless of your platform of choice, or whether you stick to one type of device or many, there are a ton of great options to choose from now. Georgia is spearheading Fitness Month for us this year, and she's going to show you just 10 of her favorites, and she's going to do it in just 2 minutes.

Most of these will work for a variety of different phone and tablet sizes, running a variety of different operating systems and versions. I couldn't find alternatives for all of them, however, so if you know of some, tell us about them!

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3 years ago

Brazil rules Apple doesn't have exclusive rights to iPhone trademark

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It's a slightly bizarre feeling, but in Brazil, this Android smartphone is the iPhone. And, thanks to a ruling by Brazilian regulators, it can continue to be called the iPhone, as Apple has been ruled not to have exclusive rights to the trademark in the country. The key item involved in the dispute -- local company Gradiente registered the iPhone trademark there in 2000, some 7 years before the first Apple iPhone. Apple's argument centered on the fact that while the trademark may have been filed, Gradiente failed to release a handset under the moniker until 2012.

Speaking to the BBC, the Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) said they expect an appeal to the decision from Apple. They also went on to declare that the decision only applies to handsets, and that Apple still has exclusive rights to the iPhone term on clothing, in publications and in software. Apple can still sell the iPhone in Brazil, but as it stands Gradiente has the option to sue for exclusivity. 

The iPhone Neo One is available for 599 reals ($304/£196.) 

Source: BBC

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3 years ago

Alcatel unveils mid range One Touch Star, and it's available in pink

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Fresh from CES where they announced a whole raft of new Android devices, Alcatel has announced yet another smartphone. The latest in the company's One Touch line, the One Touch Star is a distinctly mid-range flavored device that will likely be on display at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Oh, and it comes in a pretty fetching shade of pink. 

There is also an all white version, along with a black fronted, silver backed variety too. Beneath the colorful exterior, the One Touch Star houses a dual-core 1GHz CPU, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of on board storage and a microSD card slot. The 4-inch device houses a 480x800 resolution AMOLED display, and runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. The One Touch Star is powered by a modest, yet likely fit for purpose 1500mAh battery, and houses a 5MP rear camera along with a VGA resolution front facer. 

So, not likely to set the world on fire, but could still offer a solid enough Jelly Bean experience to those hunting for a more budget-oriented device.

Source: Alcatel

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3 years ago

Motorola RAZR HD now in stock SIM-free in the UK from Expansys

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The Motorola RAZR HD may of been rocking the U.S. for some time now, but it's only today that the Android device has become available SIM-free in the UK.

If you are after a high-end Android handset with a meaty battery then the RAZR HD is well worth considering. The 4G (pentaband) ready device sports a glorious 4.7 inch Super AMOLED HD display, 1.5 GHz Dual-core chip and 1GB of RAM, and ships with Android Ice Cream Sandwich (v4.0.4) although upgradeable to Jelly Bean (4.1).

In addition, Expansys are offering the chance to win a Virgin Experiance Day if you order in February. They have five pairs of tickets to give away each worth £125 - not to be sniffed at.

The Motorola RAZR HD will set you back £419.99 SIM free. You can order it here.

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3 years ago

Sprint pushing out security fix update to Samsung Galaxy Note 2

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Sprint Galaxy Note 2 owners should be looking for an update notification sometime soon, as the carrier has begun to push out a security fix update which bumps the device to version L900VPAMA7. While not particularly exciting, security fixes are important so you'll be wanting to grab it as soon as it becomes available. 

The update is rolling out in stages OTA and Sprint says all users should receive it within 5 days. To check for the update manually, head into Settings>System Update>Update Samsung Software>Check Now. If there's anything else you notice post update, be sure to jump into the comments below, or the forums, and let us know what you've found. 

Source: Sprint via Android Central Forums

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3 years ago

Opera hits 300 million users, confirms switch to WebKit and MWC showing of new Android browser

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We first heard of Opera's intentions to switch to WebKit back in January, following the release of a leaked internal video which made mention of the 'Ice' browser. Today, Opera has confirmed the move in a statement which also pins their user base now at 300 million. Whatever 'Ice' turns out to be will have to wait, but Opera's new browser for Android will be on show for the first time at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in a couple of weeks. 

That's not to say that 'Ice' isn't real though, Opera has confirmed its existence as one a series of R&D projects: 

Opera is also experimenting with WebKit in several research and development projects, and many of you got a peek of one of them, codenamed ‘ICE’, last month. As a leading innovator in browsers, we are very excited that ICE received such great buzz. We will provide more information about ICE and other exciting R&D projects in the future, but as we are also really proud of our new browser on Android and our Opera Web Pass operator offering, those products will be the main focus at MWC

In addition to WebKit, Opera also intends to make use of the Chromium Project too in future releases of its browsers for both computers and mobile devices. Of course, we'll be on the ground in Barcelona as everything unfolds starting in little under 2 weeks. 

Source: Opera

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3 years ago

Gotta catch 'em all, with Pokemon TV for Android

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Here's one for all the kids -- and big kids-- out there. Pokemon TV has been released into the Google Play Store bringing with it hours upon hours of cartoon battling fun. We've all come across Pokemon at some point, be it on the old Nintendo Game Boy's, or the cartoons, or the trading cards, and there's probably a good few of you guys out there that will be secretly -- or not so secretly -- delighted by this.

Pokemon TV is an official application, completely free of charge, and promises fresh episodes every week. It's good for both phones and tablets, we've had no problems installing it on a range of devices, and only requires Gingerbread and above. Grab yourselves a copy at the Play Store link above, and go ahead and pretend you downloaded it for the kids. We won't tell. 

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3 years ago

Three UK pushing out Jelly Bean update for HTC One S

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HTC started pushing out the Android 4.1.1 update to eager owners of the unlocked, international One S back on Christmas Eve. Fast forward just over a month and Three UK has today announced that they have begun to push out the Jelly Bean update to their own, carrier branded HTC One S owners. 

To snag the update for yourselves, head into Settings>About>Software Updates and start hammering on the check now option. As ever with these things though, it won't hit all of the people straight away, so a healthy dose of patience may be also be required. 

The update to Jelly Bean on the HTC One S brings with it the latest version of Sense, Sense 4+. It's a hefty download though, weighing in at over 600MB so you're likely going to want to tackle it on WiFi. If you've already managed to snag it, be sure to jump into the comments below and share with us how you're finding it. 

Source: Three UK

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3 years ago

Red Galaxy Note 10.1 LTE arrives in time for Valentine's Day

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Samsung likes to release funky colored versions of its devices, particularly when it ties in with a holiday like Valentine's Day. This year it's the Galaxy Note 10.1 LTE that's getting a fresh coat of paint, appearing for the first time in "garnet red" this Feb. 14.

The blood-red, 4G-equipped version of Samsung's pen-toting tablet launches today in Korea, and will be heading to other territories shortly thereafter -- according to Samsung it's aimed at young women and couples, like the happy duo you see in the shot above. As for internals, we're expecting the same hardware we reviewed late last year -- a 1280x800 screen, 1.4GHz quad-core Exynos chip and 2GB of RAM, in addition to a bundled Wacom-based S Pen stylus.

There's no word on pricing just yet, but if it matches up with the other flavors of Note 10.1 LTE, you're probably looking at around €600-700.

Source: Samsung via: Pocket-Lint

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3 years ago

Korean press reports Samsung Galaxy S4 to emerge in March with S3-style buttons and design language

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Latest round of pre-release rumors says no S Pen, but "contactless gestures" are likely

As it's prone to do in the weeks ahead of a major Samsung announcement, the Korean press is starting to report details of Samsung's next major smartphone, presumed to go by the name Galaxy S4. Citing "industry insiders," Korean newpaper DDaily is today claiming to have a few interesting bits of info about the upcoming Samsung flagship, for which it says Samsung is starting to ramp up component production.

First up, DDaily reports that the S4 won't stray too far form the design of the Galaxy S3. The "human-centric," "organic" look and feel will return in the new handset, along with the (somewhat controversial) three button-setup. Samsung experimented with a buttonless arrangement, it's alleged, but in the end decided to stick with the familiar home, back and menu layout.

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3 years ago

Three UK to carry Samsung Galaxy Fame - Jelly Bean on budget hardware

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Three UK has announced that it'll offer the Samsung Galaxy Fame for sale in the near future. The Galaxy Fame was one of two devices recently announced by the Korean manufacturer, which expects to start shipping it starting next month.

Like all Samsung's entry-level offerings, the Galaxy Fame looks like a shrunken Galaxy S3, complete with curved chassis and prominent clicky home button. The internals are pretty basic, though -- the Fame is powered by a 1GHz CPU with 512MB of RAM, a 3.5-inch HVGA screen and a 5MP rear camera. There's 4 gigabytes of storage included, along with a microSD slot.

Despite its relatively basic innards, the Galaxy Fame is running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box, which should be able to eke  as much performance as possible out of the phone's hardware.

There's no word on Three-specific availability or pricing, but we imagine this kind of device will be free on most contracts, and relatively inexpensive to buy outright.

Source: Three UK

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3 years ago

HTC 'One' teaser clips offer brief close-ups, gratuitous lens flare

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With less than a week to go until we see what's next from HTC, the company's hype machine has kicked into high gear. Along with a countdown clock over on HTC.com, the manufacturer's displaying brief cuts of footage showing what seems to be the rumored HTC One -- formerly known by its codename "M7."

Fortunately YouTube user guarav2328 has pulled down and spliced together the various clips (we pointed the way on Google+ plus), and we've embedded the resulting footage after the break.

There're presumably plenty of super-close-up shots of the device itself, along with generous helpings of lens flare. Among the parts we can clearly make out are the back panel with HTC's logo, the camera assembly, some kind of metal trim and an unusual curve around the back of the phone. All in all, it's a close (though not quite exact) match to the leaked press render that cropped up on Monday morning.

With its official Twitter and Facebook pages now emblazoned with references to next Tuesday's announcement events in London and New York, we suspect there may be a couple more HTC teasers ahead. That said, the manufacturer's not likely to give too much away before the big day.

We'll be live from both sides of the Atlantic next Tuesday morning to bring you full coverage HTC's new hotness. In the meantime, head past the break to see today's teaser clips.

Source: HTC; YouTube via PhoneArena

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3 years ago

LG makes Korean Optimus G Pro with 5.5-inch display officially official

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Some official information was released just earlier today on the larger Optimus G Pro headed to Korea, and now LG has spilled the beans on the new version of the device. This Optimus G Pro, which from the press images has quite a striking design, will come with the aforementioned 5.5-inch 1080x1920 display on the front and a slightly redesigned back. The back plate is using a similar square pattern from the original Optimus G, but with a curved glass covering that LG says creates a "2.5D" effect.

As for the internals, we're a little low on specifics at this point. LG is saying that device will have a quad-core processor along with the new, larger HD display and doesn't give much more information beyond that. LG is giving a release window of late February for the device in Korea, and until then we can at least drool over these great press images. We'd expect to get a look at the device come MWC in a couple weeks as well.

Source: LG (Translated); Via: Engadget

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3 years ago

What's new in Android 4.2.2

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Android 4.2.2 isn't quite official yet, but it's slow roll out has been bolstered by manual download links and folks are finding a few new things in the latest firmware. Most of it is behind the scenes and will be covered by words like "stability enhancements" and bug fixes, and those are what's really important. A specific that folks are reporting is a fix to the Bluetooth stack to fix audio stuttering, and that's something folks have been waiting for. Equally important is that plenty of people are saying their Nexus devices are no longer randomly rebooting, so if you have an issue there hopefully Android 4.2.2 fixes it. 

There are some other user-facing changes that probably won't apply to anyone without a Nexus device. Once a manufacturer gets their hands into the code, they tend to change these types of "features" to something that fits in with their version of Android a it better. Often times their version works better than stock Android, so we're not going to complain that they get changed. Here's what folks using stock are seeing:

  • When connecting via adb to a computer for the first time, you're prompted to allow the connection. This small security enhancement will help keep your bootloader locked device safe if you lose it. [Android Police]
  • App download notification have been changed. Now you'll see a progress bar that tells you the time remaining in addition to a percentage downloaded. [@ssaig]
  • Quick settings have been enhanced. Users can now long press on the Wifi and Bluetooth icons to toggle the setting. [@NittyMDev]
  • New sounds for wireless charging initiation and low battery alert. Users will now hear a notification sound when the device is placed on a wireless charger. In addition the low battery sound has been changed. [Android Police]
  • Removed option to show all calls in the phone app's call list. 
  • Vibration for notifications is longer in duration
  • New Gallery app animation allows faster loading. [@ssaig]

Really, nothing there anyone would miss if Samsung, HTC or any other manufacturer decided not to implement it. In short, 4.2.2 sounds like the bug fix update everyone has been waiting for. These kinds of updates are the ones we like seeing!

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