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4 years ago

Motorola RAZR i getting Jelly Bean update, starting in France

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Looks like the Intel-powered Motorola RAZR i is finally getting that promised Jelly Bean update. French RAZR i owners over on XDA are reporting that they've received the 300MB over-the-air upgrade, bringing the phone up to Android version 4.1.2. The RAZR i wasn't exactly a sluggish handset when we reviewed it on ICS back in September, but the phone should benefit from improved performance through Google's "Project Butter" enhancements. In addition, RAZR i owners will get the new Google Search app with Google Now, and a redesigned notification area with expandable notifications.

There aren't any reports of users outside of France getting the RAZR i Jelly Bean update just yet, so don't panic if you're not seeing the update on your handset right away. Moto often takes its time getting updates finalized for different countries and carriers, so it could a few more weeks before everyone's gotten this latest OTA.

Source: XDA; via: Frandroid

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4 years ago

How to tag Wifi access points as mobile hotspots on your Android device

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There are many reasons why you might want to use a mobile hotspot with an Android device. Maybe you're using a tablet without a mobile data connection of its own. Perhaps you're traveling overseas and hoping to avoid data roaming charges. Either way, Android 4.1 comes with well-hidden option that lets you properly mark mobile access points -- we're talking something other than your home router or the AP in Starbucks -- as mobile hotspots, allowing you to better control your use of mobile data.

Take a look after the break.

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4 years ago

White Nexus 4 pictured, looks like a Nexus 4 in white

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The photo above could well be our first look at the LG Nexus 4 in white. The shot was sent in to PhoneArena by an anonymous tipster, and seems to show the current Nexus phone with a white exterior and silver-trimmed LED flash. As with any image of unknown origin, there's no way to guarantee its veracity, but we have to say it looks real enough to us.

The full 13MP original can be inspected over at the source link, and we've got an expanded view of the lens and flash after the break. If nothing else, the difficulty involved in fabricating an image of this size is a point in its favor.

We've also heard whispers ourselves of a white Nexus 4 being in the works in the weeks since the original black model launched. And remember that LG already offers a white version of the Optimus G, the phone upon which the N4 is based. The previous two Nexus phones have been available in white too, albeit in limited quantities.

Anyone in the market for a white Nexus 4? Shout out in the comments!

Source: PhoneArena

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4 years ago

Epic Citadel now available for Android

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Epic Citadel, Epic Games' Infinity Blade-themed tech demo app, is now available for Android. Epic sends word that 'Citadel has launched on Google Play and the Amazon Appstore, where it can be downloaded for free. The app serves as a technology showcase for Epic's Unreal Engine 3 on mobile.

Epic Citadel allows players to explore a medieval-themed village, complete with cobbled streets, rolling terrain and a towering citadel. Players can choose between high performance and high quality modes to attain the best balance between visuals and speed. There's also a resolution scaling option, which may be useful for high-res devices that lack the horsepower to push Epic Citadel at full resolution. Touch controls allow players to navigate around town, but there's also a guided tour mode if you just want to admire the scenery, and a benchmark mode if you want to test your device's mettle.

The title first launched on iOS back in 2010, ahead of the original Infinity Blade's release. And while there's no suggestion of that game coming to Android, it's great to see a big-name developer like Epic getting behind Android in a more official capacity. (Readers with long memories might remember seeing a version of Epic Citadel running on an Optimus 2X almost two years ago.)

Epic Citadel is available from Google Play at the link above, and supports a wide range of Android phones and tablets. We've got more screenshots after the break, along with today's press release.

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4 years ago

Nexus 4 available on U.S. + Canadian Google Play stores

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4 years ago

Nexus 4 back on sale at German Google Play Store

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Good news for anyone in Germany looking to track down a Nexus 4 -- the 8 and 16-gigabyte versions of the coveted handset are back on sale, with a 1 to 2-week estimated shipping time. As before, Germans can pick up the LG-made Nexus for €299 with 8GB of storage, or €349 with 16GB.

In other territories, including the U.S. and U.K., the phone remains sold out. However, LG has recently indicated that the supply situation should be improving towards mid-February, and says it's recently ramped up production of the phone.

More: Google Play Store

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4 years ago

Open Garden - awesome idea, poor execution

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Open Garden is a new and innovative way to look at multiple device networking, allowing users to quite seamlessly connect phones, tablets and laptops for an internet connection. The app has been out for quite some time and has many downloads in the Play Store, but still lacks some fundamental features that keep it from completely fulfilling its promise. The idea is sound, and with a few improvements the app could be something fantastic.

Read on past the break and see what Open Garden has to offer, and how it could be changing the way we look at tethering apps going forward.

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4 years ago

HTC hosting events in NYC and London on Feb. 19 - 'M7' on the way?

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Invites to HTC events on Feb. 19 have just arrived in our inbox -- one in London, another in New York City, both running concurrently. Looks like that rumored "M7" handset could be on the way!

We're expecting HTC to show off its latest flagship device at the pre-Mobile World Congress event. Rumored to feature internal specs and design language similar to the Droid DNA, the "M7" will be HTC's first flagship smartphone of 2013. From what we've seen leak in recent weeks, it'll also pack a completely redesigned version of the company's "Sense" UI.

HTC will be hoping that by launching a week before Mobile World Congress it'll stand out from the crowd of smartphones and tablets at the show. The timing of the events also means HTC will be able to show off its new stuff to a wider audience just a week later, and ride a second wave of publicity out of MWC.

We'll be live from London and New York on Feb. 19 to bring you full coverage of whatever HTC announces.

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4 years ago

ASUS and Google working on Nexus 7 successor, says DigiTimes

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Supply chain rumormonger tips 1080p display, thinner bezel, same price point

The ASUS-made Nexus 7 has been a runaway success -- arguably the most successful Android tablet yet, and certainly the most popular Nexus device to date. So it shouldn't come as much of a surprise to hear that a successor might be in the works, and due for launch later this year.

That's exactly what's being reported by Taiwanese outlet DigiTimes, which cites its sometimes right, sometimes wrong supply chain sources with access to "engineering samples" of the tablet. The site claims the ASUS-built Nexus 7 successor (Nexus 8, perhaps?) will feature a "full HD" 1080p display, thinner bezels and the same attractive $199-249 price point. "Several specifications" will also be upgraded, DigiTimes says, though no specifics are given.

The site's sources also estimate total Nexus 7 shipments at six million as of the end of January, with the $249 32GB Wifi-only version being the most popular at present.

This is the first we've heard of a possible Nexus 7 follow-up, but there's nothing terribly shocking in there as far as we're concerned. The Nexus 7's low price has been instrumental in its success, and so any successor was likely to be priced around the same level. In addition, with mobile device screen resolutions reaching dizzying heights this year, the Nexus tablet's screen is an obvious point for improvement.

Then again, given the patchy nature of supply chain rumblings, a large pinch of salt should be taken when dealing with this kind of rumor. Either way, we'll be on the ground in San Francisco in May to see what new hardware Google brings to this year's I/O conference.

Source: DigiTimes

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Express goes global - mid-ranger with 4G LTE, SuperAMOLED Plus

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Update: Samsung's gotten in touch to tell us that the Galaxy Express will launch in the UK during the first half of the year.

It's the time of year when Samsung traditionally announces new mid-range products, and today it's the turn of the Galaxy Express to emerge into the international spotlight, following its AT&T debut last year. With a Galaxy S3-like design, 4G LTE connectivity and a 4.5-inch (WVGA resolution) SuperAMOLED Plus display, this device brings a small but significant increase in hardware muscle over the much-hyped Galaxy S3 mini.

Other notable specs include an unnamed 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM and TouchWiz'd Android 4.1 Jelly Bean under the hood. Camera-wise, there's a 5MP shooter on the back, as well as a 1.3MP front-facer. And 8GB of built-in storage is included, expandable via microSD. That's all powered by a 2000mAh battery, a fair size for a device of this kind.

There's no solid info on release plans for the Galaxy Express, but given Samsung's lack of a budget 4G offering for the European market, we're hoping we'll see it in Europe first. For more on the Galaxy Express, check out our hands-on coverage of the AT&T version. We've also got video embedded after the break.

Source: Samsung

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4 years ago

Nexus 4 shows up for sale on Best Buy's website, T-Mobile contract in tow

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The Nexus 4 has just show up for sale on Best Buy's website, with familiar T-Mobile on-contract pricing of $199.99. In typical Best Buy fashion, the off-contract price of the phone has been inflated, showing $599.99 to buy the device outright. This is something Best Buy (and other retailers) does to both cover its overhead and most importantly compel people to sign 2-year contracts, and is nothing new for the Nexus 4.

This isn't likely to be any special deal between Google and Best Buy to offer the device though, as you can bet that Google would rather secure supply for its own store before branching out to yet another retailer. This is probably just T-Mobile's current deals to resell handsets and service with Best Buy extending to the new handset. New stock heading to a wider range of T-Mobile stores means it is ready to also let resellers sell the device on its behalf.

Although not many people are likely to head to Best Buy to pick it up, the Nexus 4 is certainly getting a little more exposure as these new listings arrive. Let's just hope that Google can get its own supply channels sorted out so it can offer the device through the Play Store once again.

Source: Best Buy

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4 years ago

How to enable system sounds on your Android device

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Part of having a modern smartphone is the media experience. Today's Android phones rival about any desktop system when it comes to audio and visual cues for the way you interact with them. Case in point -- audible alerts for system UI actions.

Making your Android phone or tablet give you an affirming "tick" when you press a button or unlock your screen is easy. Open your settings, and find the "Sound" entry in the menu list. You'll see something like the above, where you can set the standard ringtone and notification. If you scroll down a bit you'll see where you can enable or disable the audible prompt when doing things like dialing a number, or unlocking your phone. What's really cool is that you can set these sounds individually, so your phone only makes the noises you want it to make.

Once you have things set up the way you like, just press the back button and leave the settings menu. Now you're set!

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4 years ago

Republic Wireless' Motorola Defy XT getting a software update

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The Republic Wireless Defy XT should be getting a software update this evening, and it will address the two biggest issues with the phone. I've been giving the service a run to see how it compares, and the two big drawbacks seem to be sound quality, and not being able to send a text while on Wifi. Both these issues are said to be fixed with this update, as well as Wifi enhancements and bug fixes.

The OTA is slated to begin rolling out at 6PM ET, and Republic says you'll need to be on Wifi with 50-percent or higher battery power still available to get it. 

While Republic is more about disrupting the current telecommunications mess the US is in with low priced service than they are fancy cutting edge devices, it's nice to see them not let the little Defy languish away with bugs. If you're using the service, be sure to check for updates if you don't get a push notification.

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4 years ago

3D printing and NFC make a great looking Nexus 4 dock

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We're all waiting for someone to sell that fancy orb docking station for the Nexus 4. In the meantime, ingenuity never rests and this 3D printed dock would make an awesome substitute. It uses a standard USB cable for charging, and an NFC sticker to trigger the NFC Task Launcher app to drop it into dock mode.

If you have access to a 3D printer, be sure to give this one a good look. And if you make any extra ones, give me a yell so I can throw my money at you.

Source: Thingiverse; via Android Central forums

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4 years ago

Google Wallet updated with new UI, performance improvements

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Google Wallet is getting a facelift today with its latest update, bringing a smoother UI and some under the hood improvements as well. The interface now more closely follows the holo UI guidelines, with navigation tabs along the top of the interface and an overflow settings button to hold all extra functions. You're no longer greeted by a list of all available cards, as they are now all housed one more tap away under the "My Wallet" tab with only your default card displayed. There is a button to go directly to "My Offers" from the first page, and new offers can be found from the "Explore" tab on the main page.

The update also brings some nondescript "improvements to the user interface, application stability, and battery life." Although no specifics are listed, these are all good improvements that although aren't as noticeable at first as a new UI make a big difference in the quality of the app.

The Google Wallet app has undergone several visual changes since its launch, and this is probably the best of the bunch. Head to the Play Store and check out the latest update if you have a compatible device, or stick around after the break for a few screenshots of the new UI.

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