Headlines

2 years ago

Android 201: What is adb?

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You hear the phrase "adb" thrown around a lot in Android forums and blogs.  We're guilty of it, too.  But what exactly is adb, and why do you need (or not need) to use it? 

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2 years ago

Google mobile payment service rumored to debut May 26

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If the muttering we're hearing through the Bloomberg grapevine is true, Google is planning to finally unveil their NFC mobile payment service on May 26. Google's system is going to be available on phones from Sprint, like the already-launched Nexus S 4G. (Not so coincidentally, the Nexus S is still the only Android phone in the U.S. with NFC.)

The NFC service will let consumers both pay and use mobile coupons with a swipe of their phone. However, Google and Sprint's offering will eventually see competition from ISIS, a joint effort between AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile.

Google does have a press event scheduled for May 26, but as of now, no one's talking. Guess we'll all have to keep our ears tuned to the latest and greatest coming out of New York that day.

Source: Bloomberg

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2 years ago

Microsoft's Bing Vision UI -- Google Goggles needs to step up its game

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One of the coolest looking things in the new Windows Phone 7 "Mango" release (see all the coverage you can handle at WPCentral) is Microsoft's Bing Vision.  It's essentially a Google Goggles clone (great artists copy/borrow/steal and all that), but the UI is really cool.  Your search categories are visible while the camera is running, looking fancy and nice as a semi-transparent overlay while you're capturing the content you want to scan.  Of course, WP7's Metro UI and its typographic look is in full force here as well.

As for functionality, Bing Vision doesn't look like it does anything out of the ordinary.  No solving Sudoku puzzles, no translation built in, and the jury is still out about how it handles business cards.  But that's not what people will think when they see it.  I'm one of those "function trumps form" kind of guys, but the mobile market is growing like wildfire, and maybe it's time for Google to step up and revamp the UI and visual style of some of their apps so they look as good as they perform. 

I use Google Goggles a lot, mostly because I'm a geek who loves to play with cutting edge tech, and I've went "all-in" with Googles apps and services.  It works great, but visual appeal is lacking compared to the competition.  See for yourself -- there's a video after the break.

Source: WPCentral

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2 years ago

Xperia Play preorders starting to reach mobile gamers

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Preorder a Sony Ericsson Xperia Play on Verizon? If so, time to check the mailbox, boys and girls. We know they've been shipping already, and now it appears they're starting to get into some excited little hands. We're still two days away from in-store availability (and a day from when we thought we'd actually see them be delivered). But we don't think anyone's going to turn away an Xperia Play should it show up a day or two early, right?

Thanks, Dustin!

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2 years ago

Sonos unveils MOG integration, more music than you can shake a stick at

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Good news for Sonos owners out there, as today Sonos has officially launched the MOG music service on Sonos. After a short software update, you'll be able to tap into MOG's custom radio stations or 11-million song catalog.

For those of you using the Android Sonos Controller, an update enabling MOG integration is in the Market. Better yet, current Sonos owners get a free, 14-day trial to MOG, so you can see if it whets your whistle.

Full PR is after the break.

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2 years ago

Dummy units of US Cellular's HTC Merge arrive

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Yeah, it's only a dummy unit, and we've already crawled all over the real thing. But this is UC Cellular's HTC Merge, folks. And that means that ... it's the same HTC Merge we've come to know and love ... on US Cellular.

We are a little surprised that there's no USCC branding on the front of this dummy unit, but it does appear on the back (pictures are after the break). Otherwise, same ol' phone. The latest rumored release date is May 31 -- and USCC hasn't come yelling that it's incorrect (it's happened once before), so maybe there's a little more truth to this one. Stay tuned.

Thanks, anon!

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2 years ago

News360 now available for Honeycomb tablets

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News360, the popular cross-platform news aggregator, is now available for Android tablets running Honeycomb.  News360 takes a bit of a different approach, combining 1,500 global sources (yes, Android Central is in there, so no worries) and a beautiful visual style.  If you're not familiar, the "360" view is a special treat, with article images floating in a spherical feeling cloud, hence the 360.  The application makes great use of the new API's with the action bar and fragments, both in the search view as well as the article view.  The developers have taken the time to really make a great example of a quality Android app, and we appreciate (and enjoy) that. 

Besides the normal use of searching for tags, users can customize their own "feeds," and the developers say that future versions will analyze a your Facebook, Twitter, TripIt, and Evernote accounts to offer automatic personalization.  That sounds like quite the feat, and I for one am very interested to see the result.  In its current state, the application connects with your social accounts (Facebook, Twitter, ReadItLater, Instapaper, and TripIt) to share articles, and can filter results based on your location.  Things are well on the way to a personal news channel.

And the best part of it all -- News360 is free.  This makes it available for everyone with a Honeycomb tablet, and makes for a very easy way to download and evaluate the app for yourself.  We've got the full press release, a series of pictures, and the download link after the break.

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2 years ago

LG Revolution promo materials hitting stores

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While we're still waiting on official word for exactly when the LG Revolution will launch on Verizon -- it's one of the phones announced way back at CES almost five months ago (see our first-look) -- word on the street is that we could see it this Thursday, May 26. We just got sent this picture of in-store promo materials and a dummy unit, so it certainly looks like things are getting close, eh?

To refresh: The Revolution is LG's 4.3-inch Android 2.2 device with a 1GHz Qualcomm processor and 5MP camera. It's an LTE-capable device and can act as a Wifi hotspot for up to eight devices.

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2 years ago

Barnes & Noble brings an all-new Nook -- 6-inches of Android 2.1 on an E-Ink Pearl display

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Believe it or not, folks, you're looking at the latest Android tablet/e-reader/thingy from Barnes & Noble. It's the all-new Nook -- six inches of E Ink Pearl on a Wifi-only device. It weighs just 7.5 ounces and is 35 percent lighter and 15 percent thinner than the first-gen Nook.

It sports 2GB of storage for 1,000 digital books, and also has a microSD card slot for even more storage.

But, what gets us excited, really, is that it's running Android 2.1 -- so you know we're going to have some fun hacking this thing.

The new Nook is currently available for preorder for $139 and starts shipping on June 10. Full presser's after the break.

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2 years ago

Motorola Droid X2 system dump and assorted goodies [from the forums]

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A new phone means two things -- we get 'em in our mitts and show you everything there is to know about them, and the system gets dumped into the forums.  The Motorola Droid X2 is no exception.  New Blur for 2.2?  It's in there.  New wallpapers?  Yep, we got those, too.  New ringtones?  You betcha.  Of course the core system files probably aren't of any use to most of us, but you know those ROM devs -- they do all sorts of magic with them.  Hopefully there's something there they can find useful for those keeping their OG Droid X for a while longer.  Hit the forums and grab what ya need!

Source: Android Central forums

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