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4 years ago

Samsung locks down S Voice following app leak

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The application file for Samsung's "S Voice" Siri clone interactive voice assistant agent was leaked over the weekend, leading to hundreds of less scrupulous users picking up the apk and installing it directly on their phones. This lead to owners of any Ice Cream Sandwich device being able to use the service intended only for owners of Samsung's next flagship phone, the Galaxy S III.

However, today it seems the pre-release fun is at an end, as Samsung appears to have locked down S Voice and prevented the leaked APK from connecting to its servers. This means any query sent to to S Voice on a non-Galaxy S III device will return a "network error" message, as you'll see above. (Funnily enough, Apple did the exact same thing when Siri was initially hacked to run on the iPhone 4, so no huge surprises there.)

So that's that. If you want to publicly embarrass yourself by shouting "Hi Galaxy" into your palm, you'll have to wait until the official launch of the Galaxy S III, which takes place in London next Tuesday, May 29.

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4 years ago

Three UK launches Sony Xperia U

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Three UK is the first British network to announce the availability of the Xperia U, the latest entry-level offering from Sony. The Xperia U sports a 1GHz dual-core CPU, a 3.5-inch FWVGA display and interchangeable colored bottom sections (for some reason.) Despite the focus on gimmicky features like swappable bottoms (and the fact that's still running Android 2.3 Gingerbread), the Xperia U looks like a solid entry-level device, based on our first impressions back at MWC.

Three's SIM-free price of £169.99 for the Xperia U matches that of the soon-to-be-released HTC Desire C, a much lower-specced device. The network also offers the Xperia U for free on 24-month contracts starting at £20 per month. Or if you don't mind an up-front charge, you can grab the phone on a £15 per month tariff with a £69 initial fee.

More info over at the source link, if you're tempted. Rival networks O2, T-Mobile UK and Orange plan to launch the Xperia U themselves later this month.

Source: Three UK

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4 years ago

HTC Bluetooth music adapter now shipping from Sprint

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We've been waiting to get the HTC Bluetooth Music Adaptor into our cars since we first saw it at Mobile World Congress in February, and now it's finally available for purchase. As you'll recall, it's a simple dongle that plugs into your car stereo AUX port (or any other 3.5mm jack, really), and allows you to wirelessly stream your music over Bluetooth. And in addition to using the standard A2DP profile, it's got the CSR aptX codec, so your music (theoretically) should sound great over the notoriously janky Bluetooth. Sprint's currently got the adaptor listed at $59.99.

Could you just plug in your phone via the 3.5mm jack? Sure. But that's not really The Future, is it? The other caveat is that you'll have to keep the adaptor charged, but Sprint rates it at 5 hours of play time and 120 hours of standby time. We've got our order on the way, so stay tuned for the full review.

Purchase: HTC Bluetooth Music Adaptor from Sprint; via EVO 4G LTE forums

 

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4 years ago

This week: The Android Glossary returns!

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Back by popular demand, Android A to Z returns this week! It's part of our Android Glossary, which in turn is an extension of our Android Dictionary. Every wonder what the hell we're talking about? Between ADB and AOSP and Dalvik and DRM and hboots and, well, all those other crazy terms, Android's full of nerdy goodness. But it can be a bit daunting if you're just starting out. That's where the Android Glossary and Android Dictionary come in.

So look for the features starting back up again this week, and don't forget to check out the full entries!

More: The Android Dictionary, the Android Glossary

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4 years ago

HTC says some products have passed U.S. Customs review (updated)

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In a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange yesterday, HTC stated that "Some of our products have passed the review and have been delivered to our telecoms operators’ clients in the US".  Referring to the import ban set in play by the ITC after an unsuccessful legal battle with Apple, the HTC One X and upcoming HTC EVO 4G LTE were barred from entering the country. 

The statement made to the TWSE is certainly vague, and we not sure exactly how to interpret "some". I've shot off an email to HTC for clarification, and I imagine everyone else has as well, so we'll probably see a statement of some sort soon. In the meantime, some of you can rest easy knowing that some of your phones are on the way to the shelves.

Update: We got a weekend update directly from HTC, which reads thusly:

"Each imported HTC model must be reviewed by Customs and will be released once Customs officials have completed the inspection.  Some models have gone through inspection and been released to our carrier customers.  We don't have the status of each specific device model at this time, but we are working closely with Customs. We remain confident that this issue will be resolved soon."

Source: Taipei Times; via icebike

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4 years ago

ASUS Transformer Pad TF300 software update rolling out for most everyone

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A minor OTA update for the ASUS Transformer Pad TF300 that started pushing Friday is now going out in full force. The update brings the software to version 9.4.3.29, and also bumps the Wifi version and Camera version up slightly. The device stays on Android 4.0.3, at least for the time being. The official word is that this brings stability improvements, which nobody here is going to complain about. Per ASUS the update is not available on the TF300 firmware page yet, and most users will have to manually check for the update from the tablet settings. As fate would have it, we're not yet seeing the update here, but if you are be sure to jump into the forums and compare notes.

Source: Android Central forums; More  ASUS Transformer forums

Thanks, Crimson!

 

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4 years ago

Play like it's 1997 with unofficial port of Theme Hospital for Android

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Some of you out there will remember Theme Hospital, the 1997 PC simulation game. Some of us spent a little too much time playing this during IT lessons at school instead of playing with boring spreadsheets. In any case, thanks to an unofficial port of the title, we can now enjoy some Theme Hospital on our Android devices for £0.99/$1.49

For those not familiar, over the course of different levels you're tasked with turning an empty hospital into an all singing, all dancing, fully equipped care facility. Oh, and you also get to hire and fire. When you've hit certain goals, you get to move on up to the next level and start the process all over again. 

It has been optimized for handheld devices, but requires a screen resolution of 800x480 or higher to be able to play. If that sounds like your device, we've got the download links for you after the break.

via Pocket Gamer

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4 years ago

From the Editor's Desk: Recharging

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No patents. No petitions. No bootloaders. No multitasking. No customs delays. See y'all next week.

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4 years ago

From the Android Forums: Factory data reset questions

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acr456 asks in the Android Central forums

Hello, I am going to factory reset my phone. However, my question is, since this is a complete reset will it also rollback to the version of Android that the EVO was launched with? For example, I know have version 2.3.5. Will it roll it all the way back to 2.1? I just want my data erased, I want to keep all my system updates including whatever updates Sprint sent. Do I have anything to worry about?

 

Also, the EVO I'm resetting is deactivated. Once the reset is complete will I be able to fully use my phone without the need of a Sprint connection? I have Wifi so that will do.

We're glad you asked! We get this one a lot, and we can see why the term factory data reset would make one think it was being returned to the factory, out-of-box condition. Thankfully, it's not. A factory reset will erase all user settings (things like home screen customizations, Wifi networks, sound settings and the like) and delete all apps downloaded from the Google Play store. It won't touch anything that's part of the system files, so your worse case scenario (and actually the likely scenario) is that system apps that have been updated from the Google Play store (things like the Gmail app or Maps) will just need updated from the Play store again. You'll still be on the latest 2.3.5 version, but the rest will be clean like a new device.

As for it working without Sprint service, everything but calls and SMS/MMS will work just fine. I've had my EVO 4G unactivated for over a year now and use it to keep little ones occupied when they come for a visit. Using Wifi, all your Google services, including the important one -- the Google Play store -- will still work just fine. Good luck, and have fun with your new EVO PDA!

Have a question you need answered? (Preferably about Android, but we're flexible.) Hit up our Contact Page to get in touch!

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4 years ago

Google-Motorola deal approved by Chinese regulators

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Regulators in China have approved the multi-billion dollar purchase of Motorola Mobility by Google. The particulars have already been approved in the US and elsewhere, and China has been the lone holdout. With that bit of dirty business behind them, the deal can now go forward. In statements released to Bloomberg Motorola and Google both confirm the news, and are looking forward to getting the loose ends tied up in short order.

We expect things to stay unchanged between Google and Motorola, as we've heard numerous times that Motorola will remain an independent entity. Only time will let us know how that turns out. It will be an interesting summer, that's for sure.

Source: Bloomberg; Thanks, Alexander!

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4 years ago

Android Central Editors' App Picks for May 19, 2012

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Ready to check out some more of our favorite apps? Each week we bring to you some of our favorites in hopes that they may become your favorites, and we want you to do the same. Drop a line in the comments and let us know some of the awesome applications you have installed on your device, so the rest of the Android Central community can check them out as well!

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4 years ago

Motorola: If ICS won't make our device better, we won't update to it

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Motorola yesterday updated its device update schedule, with the crux being that we'll finally start to see some phones get Ice Cream Sandwich in the next month or so. Specifically, that's the Droid RAZR/MAXX, with the Atrix, Atrix 2, Droid 4 and Xyboards getting it in Q3.

Have a Droid 3 or Droid X2? Sorry, you're out of luck. And today Motorola expanded on why, saying:

"... obviously we want the new release to improve our devices. If we determine that can’t be done—well then, we’re not able to upgrade that particular device."

Interesting choice of words. What it probably means is that Moto determined that the cost in time and effort to update those older phones to ICS outweighs the benefit of Ice Cream Sandwich, which indeed sucks given how young those phones are. But that's the crapshoot we all enter into these days, unfortunately.

Good luck convincing folks that Ice Cream Sandwich won't improve their phones, Moto.

You can get the full statement at the source link below.

Source: Motorola

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4 years ago

Android Central international round-up - May 19, 2012

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Compared to all the drama stateside surrounding the customs woes of HTC's new handsets, it was a fairly quiet week for international Android news. But even a quiet week here in the Android world has its share of phone launches, update news, release announcements and the like, so let's dive right in.

We got our first peek at the HTC Desire C this week, as HTC prepares to launch its successor to the Wildfire S. With NFC, ICS and Beats Audio on-board, the Desire C looks like a surprisingly feature-packed little device, and we're looking forward to getting our hands on it in the near future for a full review. Speaking of reviews, we wrapped up our Motorola Motoluxe review this week -- Richard found it to be a well-built entry-level handset, albeit one that's limited by Moto's slightly janky software additions.

And the countdown to the Samsung Galaxy S III launch continues -- T-Mobile UK announced its pricing for the device, and we heard that some stores in the UK will be opening the evening before the official launch day to give eager pre-order customers the chance to pick up their handsets.

We also got a release date for an Android flagship from another manufacturer -- LG revealed that it'll launch the Optimus 4X HD in Europe starting in June.

Check out some choice cuts from the past week's international Android developments below, and if you've got news, be sure to tip us at the usual address.

Special features:

News:

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4 years ago

Straight Talk, Unified eMail, Signal drops [From the Forums]

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We've blown through a bunch of content for you all this week so be sure to get yourself caught up if, for whatever reason you missed out on anything. In addition to the news and editorials, we also managed to do up a Android Central podcast for you all and if that isn't enough -- be sure to check out the Android Central Forums:

If you're not already a member of the Android Central forums, you can register your account today.

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