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3 years ago

Stock Talk: The downward slide at HTC continues

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HTC reported its Q4 results yesterday, and it seems pretty clear that things are going to get worse before they (hopefully) get better. Sales were down 41% compared to the year ago quarter, coming in at US $2 billion. Profitability is essentially gone, given the operating margin of 1%.

HTC’s gross margins were 23% in the quarter. That’s down from 27.1% last year, telling us that pricing pressure is still working against HTC. Given how strong Samsung is in the Android space, it has to be hard to compete. Samsung makes so many of its own parts, from processors to screens to memory. And Samsung is really the only Android manufacturer with so much control over its supply chain. This makes it tough for anyone else to compete on hardware alone, which HTC has to do.

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3 years ago

Amazon Coins coming in May to fuel Kindle Fire purchases

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Amazon today announced it'll use its own "Amazon Coins" as a virtual currency for purchasing apps and in-app purchases on the Kindle Fire. The currency system will debut in May, and Amazon says it'll give customers "tens of millions of dollars' worth of free Amazon Coins" to jump-start the economy. (Insert stimulus package jokes/groans here.)

One Amazon Coin is worth 1 cent. They'll only be available to U.S. customers at launch, and they can't be used for subscriptions.

The usual rules apply, Amazon says, in that developers will still get 70 percent of the revenue when users make a purchase with Amazon Coins. There's a small catch, however -- developers need to have their apps submitted and approved in the Amazon Appstore by April 25 to be ready for Amazon Coins at launch.

Sources: Amazon Coins; FAQ

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3 years ago

OUYA Android gaming console adds Amazon to list of retailers

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OUYA today in an e-mail announced that its upcoming Android-based gaming console will be sold by several big-box retailers as well as by OUYA itself. A few we already knew -- Amazon's a new addition to the list. Its unclear whether you'll be able to get one in stories, or if it's online only. Preorders are available now -- Target and Best Buy current have live listings -- and prices are as previously listed: $99 for the system and a single controller, $49 for another controller.

More: Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Target

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3 years ago

Nexus 10 launches in Japan

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Some two and a half months after the original launch, Google and Samsung's Nexus 10 is now available in Japan. The high-resolution, 10-inch Nexus tablet is on sale through the Japanese Google Play Store, where it's priced at ¥36,800 (around $400) for the 16GB model, and ¥44,800 (around $480) with 32GB.

Play Store URLs are the same regardless of which country you're in, so Japanese buyers can pick up a Nexus 10 using the links below --

If you're still on the fence, check out our full review of the Nexus 10 from back in November.

Source: Google Japan; via: Engadget

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3 years ago

Samsung announces Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame

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Almost identical entry-level Galaxy S3-alikes

Update: Samsung UK tells us that the Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame will be arriving on British shores starting in March.

Samsung has started the morning off by announcing two new low-end devices in its home territory of South Korea. The Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame are both powered by a 1GHz CPU and 512MB of RAM. Both have a 1300mAh battery and 4GB of storage, expandable via microSD. And both look like someone took a Galaxy S3 and put it through a shrink ray.

The main difference between the two handsets is screen size - the Galaxy Fame has a 3.5-inch screen, whereas the Young packs a 3.27-inch panel. Both are HVGA (320x480) resolution though, so you're not dealing with all that many pixels in either case. Other differences include camera set-ups - the Young has a 3-megapixel rear shooter, whereas the Fame has been upgraded slightly to 5MP. And the Fame comes with the option of NFC, something lacking in its smaller -- and likely cheaper -- sibling. Both phones will apparently come in single and dual-SIM versions, in a wide range of color options.

On the software side, you're looking at TouchWiz'd Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on both devices.

There's been no announcement on pricing or availability yet -- we can probably expect individual carriers and Samsung branches to provide more info as the day progresses. In the meantime, full spec sheets can be found over at the source link.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow

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3 years ago

Ouya consoles headed to Gamestop, Target, Best Buy in June with $100 price tag

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In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Ouya CEO Julie Uhrman mentioned a few of the retail sales plans for the much anticipated Android console. In addition to Amazon, the Ouya will be available nationwide at Target, Best Buy, and Gamestop stores for $100 this June. Additional controllers will sell for $50 and be available at the same locations.

When asked about sales figures and speculation, Uhrman didn't give a hard number, but felt excited that major retailers were interested in the Ouya, and that this was a good omen for wide consumer appeal. 

We 68,000 backers, and we’ve been selling units every day. The number of orders have grown each month. We haven’t disclosed any numbers. I think it’s fair to say to get established players in the retail space excited about pre-selling OUYA speaks to the excitement in the marketplace. We’ve had 68,000 backers, we have more than that in pre-orders today.

Of course, all this depends on the application catalog. If developers have plenty of great games ready out of the gate like we've heard they will, things should go well for the folks at Ouya, and the retail presence could really drive the inexpensive console's sales. We're looking forward to it all, and think plenty of folks will be excited as June approaches.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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3 years ago

AT&T U-Verse Live TV changes names, improves video quality over LTE

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AT&T is rebranding its U-Verse Live TV service today to a much less confusing "Mobile TV" name, and including several improvements to the app at the same time. Branding aside, video quality on Mobile TV will now improve when you're watching on LTE, which seems like a natural progression. The package will also now be a flat $9.99 per month charge regardless of platform, and customers can bill the service straight to their monthly AT&T phone bill rather than a separate account.

Mobile TV will also start offering three add-on packages -- Urban Zone, Playground TV and Paquete en español móvil -- for and additional $4.99 each. The rest of the improvements can be found immediately in its Android app, which can be found at the Play Store link above.

Source: AT&T

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3 years ago

The badassery of Borderlands 2 and Steam on Project Shield

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We've all seen the CES demos, and salivated while watching Phil put his hands all over one of the prototype Project Shield devices in his hands-on, but there is no way that's enough. We want to see as much as we can about this bad boy, and NVIDIA knows it. Starting today, they will be showing a new Project Shield video every Monday to build our anticipation for the next generation in gaming.

This week, Will from NVIDIA walks us through logging into Steam and playing some Borderlands 2 over the network right on his Project Shield device. It looks simple, the frame rate is great, and even the latency looks low enough to satisfy even the most hardcore gamer. It looks like it really is as badass as NVIDIA is claiming. Hit the break and watch the video.

Source: NVIDIA

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3 years ago

Could Google be working on a unified messaging platform?

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The screenshot above, while not Android, is extremely interesting regardless because of what it may be showing off. Posted by developer François Beaufort, what's seen here is a Chrome OS desktop with both a new notifications system and more interestingly a new app icon that we've never seen out of Google before. The "rich notifications", which show messages, calls and Google+ activity all in-line and within one pane are displayed in a new Jelly Bean and Google Now design. The new icon, to the right of the Google Drive app in the dock, shows four cascading Google-themed chat boxes.

This screenshot raises a whole lot more questions than it answers, and instantly gets us speculating as to whether or not this new notification system and app are a sign of something bigger than just Chrome OS notifications. Could this finally be a unified messaging service from Google? This could quite easily be just Google+ notifications -- missed hangout calls, Google+ Messenger messages and picture shares -- but we surely hope it's more than that.

Now of course this isn't Android, but it could have a huge impact on Android users if this turns out to be a true unified messaging service from Google. A unified messaging system that brings together Google Voice, Talk, Google+ and others would be a huge step forward for the integration of Google's often-disjointed services.

Source: François Beaufort (Google+); Via: Droid-Life

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3 years ago

Android 4.1.2 update for Verizon Galaxy S3 leaks out

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The Verizon model of the Galaxy SIII (S3) received its Jelly Bean update fashionably late back in December, and now an Android 4.1.2 update has leaked out as well. A poster at XDA Forums, who has had previous versions of the Galaxy S3 software posted, has just added this latest version to the list. The build -- version VRBMA2 -- is based on Android 4.1.2 and has a build date of January 19th. Initial reports are that this update doesn't include the "Premium Suite" apps, at least at this time, so we'll have to keep an eye out for future builds.

The file is available to download and flash at the source link below, but we have to put a word of caution on flashing pre-release versions of firmware. If you know the risks and want to go ahead with it, be sure to chime in in the forums and let other users know how it goes.

Source: XDA; Via: Droid-Life 

More: Verizon Galaxy S3 Forums

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3 years ago

Droid RAZR M appears in 'Platinum' on Best Buy website

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Seemingly out of nowhere, a new color of the Motorola Droid RAZR M has just appeared for sale on the Best Buy website. The new model, dubbed "Platinum" is a shiny silver color with blue accented power and volume buttons. The top and bottom bezels around the screen are still black, but everything else is shiny and new. Unfortunately the back of the device isn't pictured on the website, and Verizon's site doesn't seem to list the phone anywhere either.

The rest of the device and specs seem to be the same as the original, and Best Buy is offering the new variety at $49.99 with a two-year contract -- same as the other colors online -- on Verizon. Head to the source link if you want to check out a few more pictures for yourself.

Source: Best Buy; Via: Droid-Life

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3 years ago

Brit + Co. app now available for Android

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Brit + Co. is debuting their Android application, which brings the entire Brit + Co. experience to your Android phone or tablet. The app let's you browse through all the blog posts, sort them by category, and even search out posts by subject. 

If you're not familiar with Brit + Co., you'll find all sorts of "innovative ideas for simple, beautiful and creative living, online and off". Things like how to sew patches on the elbow of your favorite sweater, or where to find an ice mold that looks like Richard Branson, or even a tasty recipe for hot chile cocktails. Now, you can do this away from your computer with a very nicely done application. Grab it from the Google Play link above, and visit Brit + Co. to learn more about who they are and what they do.

Source: Brit + Co.

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3 years ago

T-Mobile set to launch Galaxy S3 LTE as soon as March 27

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A leaked roadmap, obtained by TmoNews, seems to show that T-Mobile is set to launch a Galaxy S3 with LTE as soon as March 27th. The T999L (L for LTE, naturally) is set to launch on either March 27th or April 4th, but the on- and off-contract pricing is still under wraps. Other than the new LTE capabilities for T-Mobile's soon-to-launch network, we wouldn't expect many other changes to be made on the inside. If you're interested in seeing what a Galaxy S3 with LTE is like, we took a look at a U.K. model back in December.

Also on this roadmap is the Galaxy Exhibit, which we saw in leaked press images of earlier today. T-Mobile looks to be readying both a prepaid and postpaid launch of this device the same week as the Galaxy S3. Also notable is the BlackBerry Z10 -- which should have LTE -- and a Sonic LTE hotspot.

It looks like the last week of March could be a big launch of T-Mobile's LTE network and devices to run on it all at once. We'll be looking forward to it.

Source: TmoNews

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3 years ago

HTC promises 'new sound and camera experience in 2013'

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Normally I avoid infographics like the plague. They're basically free advertising, and baby needs a new pair of shoes. But HTC just published one on a "Brief history of photography." And tucked down at the bottom is the following line:

HTC kicks off a new sound and camera experience in 2013

That's very much in the same ballpark as the supposed "ultrapixel" sensor Pocket-Lint reported will be used in HTC's next round of phones.

Only a couple weeks until HTC's Feb. 19 events in New York and London, folks. We're getting close.

Source: HTC

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3 years ago

Carbon: the way Google should be doing backup on Android

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In theory, apps and data on your Android device should be backed up to "the cloud" and tied to your Google account. This means -- again, in theory -- that when you sign into a new device your apps and data will be restored to that device. Anyone who has owned an Android phone or two (or ten) knows that this really isn't the case. There isn't any transparency as to what apps are backed up, which apps will be restored and least of all which apps will bring their associated data along. So how do you solve this problem?

Enter, Carbon - App Sync and Backup.

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