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4 years ago

Dolphin Browser HD - Search the web and navigate the browser using Dolphin Sonar

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The folks from MoboTap have now released the latest version of Dolphin Browser HD bumping it up to v7.4.0. Aside from the usual bug fixes typically inlcuded with all updates, this release actually introduces a new feature called Dolphin Sonar that allows you to issue voice commands to help navigate the web. Once installed, you can open up Dolphin, give your device a shake then tell it what you want to do.

"Our Gesture-based browsing function was a game-changer in terms of the way people browse on their mobile devices, and Sonar is the logical next step," said Yongzhi Yang, CEO of MoboTap, makers of Dolphin Browser. "Just as sonar is used by dolphins to navigate, Dolphin Sonar interprets sound to get you where you want to be online. We are continuously thinking of new ways to heighten our users' mobile browsing experience with new and innovative features."

Having given it a quick run through, it fairs quite well when issued commands. I'm not so sure I would use it all the time but I suppose that's the good thing about it -- you don't have to but in case you want to, it's there. You can find the full press release and download link past the break.

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4 years ago

Toshiba Excite 10 LE coming March 6, starting at $529

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Toshiba announced today that their new Excite 10 LE will be available for purchase starting March 6, and a starting price of $529. Billed as the world's thinnest and lightest 10-inch tablet (7.7mm and 535g respectively), the Excite 10 LE will cost $529 for the 16GB version, and $599 for the 32GB version. It's packed full of new features like an AutoBrite display, covered in Gorilla Glass, SRS sound, and an anti-smudge coating to keep it looking good. Here's the specs:

  • Android 3.2, Honeycomb
  • 10.1-inch IPS display
  • Corning Gorilla Glass
  • 10-finger multi-touch support
  • 1280 x 800 resolution, 16:10 aspect ratio
  • Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 dual-core 1.2GHz processor
  • 1GB LPDDR2 RAM
  • 16GB and 32GB configurations
  • 2 megapixel front-facing camera
  • 5 megapixel rear-facing camera with LED flash
  • Micro USB, Micro HDMI ports
  • Micro SD card slot
  • Wifi (802.11b/g/n) and Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
  • Gyroscope, Accelerometer, GPS, eCompass and Ambient Light Sensor
  • Stereo speakers with sound enhancements by Toshiba and SRS Labs
  • Built-in 25 watt-hour rechargeable lithium ion battery
  • 10.1” (W) x 6.9” (D) x 0.3” (H)
  • 1.18 pounds (535g)

The Excite 10 LE ships with Honeycomb, but Toshiba says the Ice Cream Sandwich update is in the works and coming this spring. We're not thrilled when manufacturers say coming soon, but a tablet this thin and light almost makes up for it. The full press release is after the break.

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4 years ago

Sprint provides free Mobile Accessibility app to users with low vision

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Today at the 27th annual International Technology & Persons with Disabilities Conference Sprint announced that they will begin offering a free application to ease the use of Android phones for people who are blind or have low vision. The app, written by developers at Code Factory, is free in the Sprint area of the Android Market for Sprint, Boost Mobile, and Virgin Mobile customers.

The application normally sells for $99 US, and is for anyone who has trouble reading the small print on a smartphone. It's simple user interface and voice guided instructions help users make and receive calls, texts and mail messages, as well as access things like their contacts, calendar, and even browse the web.

We're hard on the carriers here sometimes. Sometimes they deserve it. But I want to take a moment and say on behalf of all of us at Android Central that we applaud Sprint for what they're doing here. The people that will find this application useful may not be able to afford a hundred dollar Android app, and offering it for free is a nice way to give back to customers. Nice work Sprint. 

It's available in both English and Spanish, free for Sprint customers with Android phones running 2.1 or higher. Download links are below, and a short video and the press release are after the break.

Download Wireless Accessibility in English

Descargar accesibilidad inalámbrica en español

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S II now available on US Cellular, arrives in stores tomorrow

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As we predicted last week, the Galaxy S II will arrive in US Cellular stores tomorrow, March 1, with online availability beginning today. The award winning smartphone will cost you $229.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate and with a two year contract (you'll get another $100 off if you're a new customer), and will surf on the carrier's 3G network rather than its soon-to-launch LTE wavelengths. 

It's the same Galaxy S II you've grown to love, complete with a 4.52-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 1.2 Ghz dual-core Exynos processor, and 16 GB internal storage. It's shipping with Gingerbread, and US Cellular hasn't made its Android 4.0-update plans clear as of yet, though we're hoping they'll keep on top of it. 

Those of you who've been patiently waiting can grab yours today at the source link, or sit tight and head into a US Cellular retail location tomorrow. 

Source: US Cellular

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4 years ago

Eric Schmidt's Mobile World Congress keynote now online

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One of the highlights yesterday in Barcelona was Eric Schmidt's keynote address. Schmidt always entertains, and as former CEO and current chairman at Google we're usually listening when he speaks. At Mobile World Congress this year, Schmidt was focused on one thing -- the digital divide. We did get to see a nifty demonstration of Chrome for Android Beta from Android Product Director Hugo Barra, but for the most part it's an hour of hearing Schmidt's thoughts on how to bring connectivity to areas of the world that don't have it, and why that matters.

It's worth a look. There's no hidden gems about Jellybean or some secret-stealth project the folks at Mountain View might be working on, but it's a look at what drives Schmidt, and in turn Google, to go forward. You can find it embedded after the break.

Source:  Google Youtube channel

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4 years ago

HTC One car dock and app the best vehicle experience yet

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We snagged a few minutes with the all-new car dock app on the HTC One series phones. Let's not beat around the bush here -- it's easily the best car app we've seen on an Android smartphone, bar none.

You start off with our favorte feature -- a plugless dock. There are four connecting pins on the back of the phone that hook things up to the dock without having to fumble with a plug. If you've never used a dock like that before, it takes all of the guesswork out of it -- and that's a must while driving.

Once you're connected, the car app automatically launches. Within the app, you've got a cube motif -- not unlike what you might see in an Android launcher, actually. With it, you can easily swipe between navigation, your contacts list and phone, the music app, Tune-in Radio (which is included) -- and, as HTC told us, other third-part apps shoud work with it out of the box as well. But HTC's own apps are so well-done that you might hesitate to use something else. The buttons are large and extremely easy to see and press -- just about the best we've seen. The UI is bright and clear of distraction. Audio will stream to your car stereo via Bluetooth. Don't have Bluetooth? No worries. A dongle that plugs into your aux port will take care of that.

Check out the video of it in action after the break. As of now, our only real question is this: When can we get it?

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4 years ago

Google offering 29 albums for $2.99 in honor of the leap year

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Google is offering 29 music albums priced at $2.99 in honor of the leap year in the Android Market. The albums range from Rihanna to Pink Floyd to Bob Marley, so everyone will likely be able to find something that fits their taste.

Google introduced Google Music last year and this is a good way to drive adoption. The more high quality albums they're able to offer at low prices like this, the more people will be inclined to use the service.

If you're interested in any of the albums, please find a link to the Android Market in our source link.

Source: Android Market

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4 years ago

Android Market Developer Console adds new metrics to its Application Statistics

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The Application Statistics dashboard within the Android Market's Developer Console has been upgraded with new functionality and a revamped UI in order to help developers better track their apps' performance. Previously, Applications Statistics showed developers where their app was being installed, by whom, and on which device. With the update, Application Statistics can now measure unique users as well as unique device models by tracking active installs, total installs, and daily installs and uninstalls. All data can now be broken down into stats for individual carriers as well.

Additional functionality includes the ability to track individual app versions, as well as an integrated timeline that plots the app's metrics since its arrival on the Market, allowing developers to see which promotional period, version update, or other factor contributed to a spike in installations. Along with the new features, the easier-to-manage UI improves usability and simplifies exporting data. 

The Application Statistics update is now live in the Android Market Developer Console. Android Developers' official statement can be found at the source link.

Source: Android Developers Blog

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the Huawei MediaPad 10FHD

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Huawei isn't just upping its game when it comes to smartphones. The Chinese manufacturer's also launching a new, high-end product in the tablet space -- the Huawei MediaPad 10FHD. With high-end specs and an attractive chassis, the latest MediaPad easily matches what other Android OEMs have been showing of late. Today we tracked down the device at Mobile World Congress for some hands-on time. Join us after the break to read our first impressions.

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10-inch)

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And here we have the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 that looks more like a brother from another mother. It's a Galaxy Tab, all right. But the speakers have been brought out front -- basically it's the same body as what we saw released in Germany to stave off design patent issues. That makes it different from the newly announced Galaxy Note 10.1, which also throws in the S Pen feature. Elsewhere on the hardware front, we've got a 10.1-inch plane-line switching display at 1280x800 resolution, a 1 GHz dual-core processor, and it's running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, with the TouchWiz UI improvements on top. 

Things are as speedy as you'd expect, and Samsung's done well with the UI tweaks to make use of all that extra space.

We've got a complete hands-on with still and moving pictures after he break.

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the ASUS Transformer Pad 300

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Along with the Padfone and Transformer Pad Infinity, ASUS unveiled the Transformer Pad 300 at Mobile World Congress this week. The Transformer Pad 300 is best described as a budget version of the Transformer Prime -- if there is such a thing as a budget quad-core tablet. In any case, it's mainly the screen resolution and build that separates the Pad 300 from its higher-end (and likely more expensive) siblings.

The Pad 300 is constructed of plastic as opposed to aluminum, and the resolution is limited to 1280x800, compared to the Infinity's dizzying 1920x1200. But that's still nothing to sniff at, and the IPS displays used by ASUS look great, even at the lower resolution. And although it's chunkier, and made of plastic, the Pad 300 still feels good -- if a little bulkier -- in the hand. We should probably mention that laptop docking functionality is included too, just as you'd expect for a Transformer series device, and the business of docking the tablet is just as seamless as it's ever been.

The Transformer Pad 300 is loaded with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which flies along on NVIDIA's quad-core chip. ASUS has included its usual selection of widgets and subtle changes to stock Android, which will be familiar to current Transformer and Transformer Prime owners.

Join us after the break for our initial hands-on video of the ASUS Transformer Pad 300.

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (7-inch)

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There are those who swear by the 10-inch tablet, and then there are those who say that the smaller size is the only way to go. Samsung's brought out new hardware for both, with the newly announced Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1-inch), and this, the previously announced 7-inch Galaxy Tab 2.

We're still not entirely sold on the need for all the variations of the smaller-size tablets, but the 7-incher GTab2 does feel great in the hand. It's got all the usual Samsung improvements, including TouchWiz running atop Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The 7-inch PLS TFT display (that's Samsung's version of an IPS screen) rock a 1024x600 resolution, and it's all powered by a 1GHz processor.

We've got more pics and hands-on video after the break.

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4 years ago

Texas Instruments shows off ultrasonic stylus that can work in three dimensions

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At Mobile World Congress 2012, Texas Instruments was demonstrating a stylus that communicates its distance from a tablet over ultrasonic frequencies. The tablet in this demo has a microphone in each of its four corners, which can pinpoint exactly where the stylus is pointing at the screen, even if you're not touching it. Of course, the stylus also works perfectly well along the two standard planes, but it's particularly cool when you pull back and the model correspondingly zooms out. 

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4 years ago

Dancing Androids - Mobile World Congress edition

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

You didn't think we'd go an entire show without seeing some dancing Android robots, did ya? Intel had few at its booth.

And, no. We didn't dance.

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy Mini 2

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Awwwwww, the Samsung Galaxy Mini 2 is a cute little bugger. It's a little bizarre going from a world of 5-inch-plus smartphones down to the diminutive Galaxy Mini 2, but darned if it doesn't feel kinda nice in the hand, kinda like you're holding a little child by the hand, waiting to show it through the big, brave world. No, really. Because in when you're comparing it to the high-resolution, quad-core monsters out there, you sort of want to keep the Galaxy Mini 2 close, where it's safe. Its 3.7-inch HVGA (320x480) display isn't really the sort of thing we'd want to give a seasoned smartphone user, and you're not going to be outputting any video with that 800 MHz processor. But if you remember that this merely is an entry level Android 2.3 smartphone, it could stand to serve you well.

We've got more pics and hands-on video after the break.

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