Headlines

2 weeks ago

Shot Tracker aims to capture and improve your basketball game

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Rene and Adam may not be the best basketball players on the planet,or even the best here at CES, but the folks at Shot Tracker say all you need is a little guidance to achieve greatness. Their fitness tracker is specific to basketball, and with the focus comes a lot of functionality for anyone looking to get serious with their jump shot. The system requires a small tracker sit on your wrist with a separate tracker sitting on the net, and together they send data to the mobile app to show off what you're made of. More importantly, you can compare your jump shot and your effective training routine to your friends over great distances in order to show that you really are the king of the court. The app supports a coaching mode as well, so you can be assigned specific workouts and see how effective you are in reaching your goals.

Shot Tracker is available now in starter kit form on their website, and by the looks of things it's everything you need to get serious about your basketball skills.

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2 weeks ago

Fitbit shows off the Charge HR and Surge Watch

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You can't get too far in a conversation about fitness trackers without talking about Fitbit. These tracking wearables have become the widest known brand in the category, and with good reason. This year at CES we're not seeing any new products from Fitbit, but instead we're seeing new ways Fitbit can be used and intent to make the new Charge HR band and Surge watch more broadly available to the public.

What sets the Fitbit Charge HR and Surge Watch apart from other Fitbit are the GPS chips contained within. These chips, along with some new sensors, allow Fitbit to create a category for more serious fitness folks. The Fitbit Surge also includes some basic phone notification support, for things like an incoming call or a text message. It creates a hard dividing line between people who want casual fitness tracking in a serious smartwatch, and those who would like a serious fitness tracker that plays nice with your phone.

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2 weeks ago

U.S. Cellular to begin testing VoLTE this year in select markets

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Voice over LTE (VoLTE) appears to be the hot new item that all the carriers are looking to implement, and it looks like U.S. Cellular will soon be testing the technology itself. CEO Ken Meyers recently confirmed that the carrier will begin testing VoLTE in a few markets starting this year.

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2 weeks ago

Android Auto: Hands-on with Pioneer's 8100NEX head unit

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Android Auto

You don't need to blow a fortune on a new vehicle to get to use Android Auto. A number of manufacturers, including Pioneer, are showing off aftermarket head units using Google's automotive software. Like previous Android Auto implementations, such as the early versions shown off at Google I/O, Pioneer's system lets you control your mobile world using your voice, or the built-in touch interface. Simply connect a supported Android phone over USB to link calls, messages, navigation and music into the head unit.

Of the six new Pioneer head units supporting Apple's rival CarPlay, three will also support Android Auto. Higher-end models like the 8100NEX will feature capacitive touchscreens, while cheaper resistive models will also be offered.

Check past the break for a walkthrough of Pioneer's implementation of Android Auto.

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2 weeks ago

The LG AKA: Cute? Creepy? I don't care, I want one

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LG AKA

The eyes have it as we get our first look at LG's colorful Korean character phones

You learn a thing or three running Android Central. One is that you need to remember to have fun with phones from time to time. Another is that sometimes there are serious regional differences that you just have to roll with.

Those nuggets are what bring us to the LG AKA, an Android smartphone that until now I've really only seen as a phone with a pair of blinking eyes, held by happy people in Korean-language press releases. They look playful. They're having fun. The phones, that is. And so I almost didn't actually want to pick up the phone at LG's booth at Central Hall here at CES, lest the magic somehow be lost and the blinking eyes close forever.

But I dared. I picked up the little creature and found a phone in my hand, clad in a colorful case, with a bit of the display left uncovered for those peepers.

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2 weeks ago

Palm is back, this time as a TCL company

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TCL resurrects the Palm brand

TCL is resurrecting the Palm brand with a brand-new Palm, Inc. based in California. As we reported last week, TCL purchased the Palm brand from HP late last year, although at the time it wasn't clear what the company had planned. It's not at all clear what TCL intends to do with the Palm brand, although they seem to recognize the history that the brand carries.

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2 weeks ago

Here are the first Sharp TVs running Android TV

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Sharp UB and UH Series TV

Sharp display with the added features of Android TV packed inside

Now that Google has started shipping Android TV packaged in the Nexus Player it was only a matter of time before we started seeing companies releasing TV sets with the software on board. Sharp is one of these companies doing just that by showing off their UB and UH series which have have Android TV installed why at CES 2015.

All of Sharp's new televisions in the UB and UH series are Ultra High Definition sets that will come in a wide range of screen sizes. There is no information about what screen sizes will be available that run Android TV but we know that there will be a decent range of sizes available for purchase.

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2 weeks ago

Endomondo update aims to help you keep your New Year's resolutions

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Looking to help users stay committed to their New Year's resolutions, Endomondo has updated its Android app with some new tools. Coming along for the ride are two new features that allow users to create their own private challenges, as well as define weekly fitness goals.

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2 weeks ago

Quick look at Alcatel's new affordable Pixi 3 line of phones

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Alcatel dumped quite the set of announcements at CES with new phones and tablets, and now we've had a chance to get our hands on the new Pixi 3 line. These super budget-minded phones come in four different sizes — 5, 4.5, 4 and 3.5-inches — with specs relevant to their sizes, and most interestingly come with the choice (at time of purchase) of Android, Windows Phone or Firefox OS.

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2 weeks ago

Hands-on with Samsung's new Galaxy A5 and A3

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Samsung Galaxy A5 and A3

A couple of beautiful devices that offer up Samsung's new design on the cheap

If it wasn't clear at this point, Samsung is taking its new metal design seriously and expanding it throughout its new lineup — including these two new additions, the Galaxy A3 and A5. These budget-focused models are hitting India and Asia at low price points, but bring competitive specs, nice style and many of Samsung's trademark features and software.

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2 weeks ago

Motorola coming to China with all-new Moto X Pro in tow

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Now that Lenovo has officially acquired Motorola, it looks like the purveyor of Moto X's is looking to break back into China. The company announced today that it will be coming to the country early this year with a set of three devices: the Moto X, Moto G (with LTE), and the all new Moto X Pro.

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2 weeks ago

Thalmic's Myo Armband wants to be your wireless controller

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While still mostly an accessory for developers to play with and build new experiences with, the Myo armband has been on the short list of gadgets to keep an eye on for a while now. The promise of an arm cuff that responds to your hand gestures and controls anything from your thermostat to the channel on the television is interesting enough, but it looks like the Thalmic Labs folks at CES this year are ready to show off some mobile integration.

Check out the video as Rene and Adam get the rundown on all things Myo, but remember that these are still pre-order only for the moment. At the absolute least, it's great to see the forward momentum.

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2 weeks ago

LG G Flex 2 heading towards Vodafone and U.S. Cellular too

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The world's latest bendy phone, the LG G Flex 2, is en route to U.S. Cellular and Vodafone UK. Vodafone has locked down a 6-week exclusive following launch. Back in America, a U.S. Cellular spokesperson has confirmed that they'll be offering the G Flex 2 this spring, though other details were scant.

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2 weeks ago

This is Panasonic's Android Auto head unit, coming to a car near you

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Panasonic Android Auto Main Display

A quick look at what Android Auto will look like on Panasonic's system

Panasonic, a member of the Open Automotive Alliance, brought their incoming Android Auto powered head unit with them to CES 2015. This head unit is not a unit that consumers can buy and install themselves in their personal vehicles but it is one that will be coming soon to several different car OEMs.

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2 weeks ago

Audi/LG partnership yields mystery Android Wear smartwatch [updated]

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LG Audi watch

**Update Jan. 7: Turns out when we were told this watch was running a variation of Android Wear, that wasn't exactly correct. Check out our exclusive hands-on!

Update: We have confirmation from LG that this is an LG watch made for Audi, running a variation of Android Wear. LG is working on a webOS based wearable, but this is unrelated.*

At the Audi press conference at CES 2015 today, Audi hailed a series of partnerships with leading tech firms including LG, Samsung Display and NVIDIA as the carmaker unveiled new Android Wear-supported in-car systems. But the press conference wasn't call cars — Audi board member Ulrich Hackenberg kicked things off by summoning an Audi Prologue onto the stage using a mystery smartwatch.

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