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5 years ago

Latest Apple patent lawsuit targets Galaxy Nexus lockscreen


The latest installment of Apple vs. Samsung saga sees Cupertino taking offense with the lockscreen on the Galaxy Nexus. The complaint, filed once again in Germany, is the first directed towards the Android 4.0 flagship device. The claim made is that the Galaxy Nexus infringes upon Apple's own slide-to-unlock utility model. 

FOSS Patent's blogger Florian Mueller describes this utility model as a limited fast-track patent that companies are allowed to file for alongside traditional patents. Apple has done just this with slide-to-unlock in Germany. Samsung's defense points to a device from Sweden known as the Neonode, which managed to persuade a court in the Netherlands in 2011 to question the validity of the Apple's slide-to-unlock filing.

The court is expected to reveal its decision on Mar. 16. What's clear already, though, is that we're sure to see more of these patent lawsuits as the year continues.

Source: iMore

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5 years ago

Sony Ericsson ST25i 'Kumquat' pic leaks, is Mini-Me to Xperia S's Dr. Evil


We saw plenty of the Xperia S before it officially surfaced at CES, and we've already seen leaked photos of the MT27i "Pepper", along with a purported leaked roadmap for other Sony phones. Today, though, XperiaBlog has the first image of at what is reportedly the Sony (Ericsson) ST25i "Kumquat", a mid to high-end Android phone with a 3.5-inch display and a familiar industrial design.

The "Kumquat", which according to the leaked roadmap is due this April at a ~€260 price point, is apparently powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor, with a 5MP camera and a qHD (960x540) display. If the rumored specs and price are correct -- and admittedly that's still a pretty big "if" -- this device could be very tempting for those looking for a smaller, more portable smartphone with high-end specs.

Hopefully we'll see more of the "Kumquat" at Sony's Mobile World Congress presentation in just a few weeks, where the manufacturer looks set to reveal more of its 2012 line-up.

Source: XperiaBlog

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5 years ago

Google Sky Map getting open sourced


Google's own window into the night sky is all set to head down the open-source road. The Google Sky Map application has been massively successful, currently boasting over 20 million users. Not bad considering this app was created in part just to show off the capabilities of the early Android smartphones. 

Now though, Google has decided that it is "donating Sky Map to the community." Through a collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, future development of the application will be the result of student projects. In addition to this, the app itself has been open-sourced, allowing budding astronomers to take the code and "augment it as they wish."

You'll find download links to Google Sky Map after the break -- it's still a brilliant way to show off what Android can do. 

Source:Google Research Blog

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5 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 16GB now on sale at Futureshop for only $400


If you live near a Futureshop and have yet to pick up an Android tablet yet for whatever reason -- this might be your weekend to set aside the time to do so. Right now -- Futureshop has the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 WiFi version coming with 16GB of storage on sale for only $400 until February 10th. That's $100 off the original price for Futureshop and one heck of a deal on a great tablet. Need to know more about the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1? You can check out our full review or hit up the Futureshop link below.

Source: Futureshop

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5 years ago

AT&T's Samsung Galaxy Note passes through FCC


The Samsung Galaxy Note that we already know is coming to AT&T, has passed through the FCC.  There's absolutely no surprises -- we see the 21Mbps UMTS/HSPA+, GSM 850/1900, and band 4 and 17 LTE radios, along with NFC, Wifi and Bluetooth.  Now all we need to know is when the SGH-i717 will go up for sale -- all we've officially heard is "the coming weeks".  Even though it's not a surprise, we're still pumped to see this one stateside.

Source: FCC

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5 years ago

Hurry: HTC EVO View 4G still on sale at 1SaleADay for only $229


Who wouldn't want to save $510 on a HTC EVO View 4G Android tablet? That's what I thought, just about everyone loves to save money and 1SaleADay has it priced out at $229 for today only. You got a few hours more to save nearly 70 percent on this tablet, which runs Android 2.3 which isn't ideal but hey you can always root it! The 7-inch form factor is a great on the go size, the 1.5GHz processor brings some nice speed to it, and it has 32GB of on board storage. Lots of positives to be seen here, so hit the link below to grab one for yourself.

Source: 1SaleADay

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5 years ago

Purported LG X3 render shows a thin, tall Android phone


A new leaked render from Pocket Now shows what they say is the upcoming quad-core LG X3. Couple things to note here: One is that, yes, it's said to be running the new NVIDIA Tegra 3 chipset. That's not a great surprise, given that NVIDIA said last fall the first quad-core phones would hit early this year, and LG had the first dual-core smartphone with the Optimus 2X.

Nor are we overly concerned about there being only three capacitive buttons below that unofficially 4.7-inch display and -- WAIT A MINUTE. Capactive buttons and a 4.7-inch display? That's a big-ass display, at a 1280x720 resolution, no less. Compare that to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which has a 4.65-inch display -- but that's including the on-screen buttons, so you're really only dealing with 4.3-inches or so of screen real estate for non-full-screen tasks. If this X3 stuff pans out, we're talking 4.7 inches of usable space. Whoa. That's still a half-inch shy of the Samsung Galaxy Note, but still.

Other rumored specs include Ice Cream Sandwich (as it damn well should have), 8MP and 1.3MP cameras, 16GB of storage and a 2000 mAh battery, plus NFC, with thickness coming in under 9 mm. 

And, yes, folks, in all likelihood we'll see this guy at Mobile World Congress at the end of February. We're going to see a lot of phones at Mobile World Congress. Because it's a congress. Of mobile. Of the world. Or something. Whatever. We'll be there.

No, our only real questions rank thusly:

  • When can we get one?
  • Where can we get one?
  • Will human sacrifice be required to get it quickly in the United States? Because we're not above that.
  • Wait. Scratch that. No human sacrifice. That's wrong.
  • But seriously. Let's talk.

Source: Pocketnow 

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5 years ago

Photo Stream, Power Control Widget [From the Forums]


It's has been a somewhat busy week for Android news plus, we managed to get another awesome Android Central podcast up for you all. If you missed out on anything, you'll want to jump back a few pages and get yourself up-to-date. Make sure you stop by the Android Central forums as well:

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

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5 years ago

Could Instagram land on Windows Phone before Android?


We all really love unfounded rumors about things, right? (OK, not all of us.)  Well, Fastcompany seems to believe that Instagram, the ever-popular photo application for iOS devices, could actually land on Windows Phone before Android, eventhough Instagram has already confirmed that they are working on the Android application. Fastcompany is claiming that Microsoft may have worked out a deal with Instagram to bring the application to Windows Phone, but we are left wondering if Instagram would really release their application on a platform with a much smaller marketplace and market share.

For now we must sit back and wait, but we're not getting too worked up over things just yet.

Source: Fastcompany; via: WPCentral

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5 years ago

Android A to Z: What is the JIT?


What is the JIT?  JIT stands for "Just In Time," and we use it to describe a Dalvik JIT compiler, which was added to Android with the 2.2 release.  It compiles bytecode into native machine code at runtime.  Essentially it takes the code for an app, analyzes it and converts it into something that runs faster.  It does all this while the application is running, and that's where the "just in time" tag comes from.  The JIT compiler designed for Android also can do this with a very short "warm up" time, meaning it doesn't take very long to analyze the code before it starts working.  It stores information in a cache in your phone's RAM, which means it's not an ideal solution for devices with low memory.  It's been optimized to have a small footprint -- about 100K per process -- but even that is enough to impact performance on older models like the G1 or HTC Magic.  This is why most phones that came before the Nexus One never got an official version from Google -- hardware limitations.

You hear terms like "runs faster" or 4 to 5 times performance increase anytime you talk about Android's JIT compiler.  A JIT compiler simply saves CPU cycles -- more work can be done for each clock cycle.  This means applications that were throttled by CPU performance get faster, and apps that are "rate-limited" (run until they are finished without taxing the processor to the maximum) finish faster and use less battery because of it.  Not all applications see a significant speed increase, and most applications written with the NDK or in native code won't see an increase at all, as they don't use the Dalvik virtual machine.  

If all this reads like Greek to you, that's OK.  To the end user (that's you and me) all we should see is better performance in most of our applications.  We certainly saw that when Froyo was released for the Nexus One, and things have just gotten better with every release.  For the more technically inclined, check out the video from Android engineers Ben Cheng and Bill Buzbee during Google I/O 2010 where the JIT compiler was introduced.

Previously on Android A to Z: What's an IPS display?; Find more in the Android Dictionary

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5 years ago

Acer Iconia A200 video hands-on


So a few quick thoughts on the Acer Iconia A200, now that's it's available in stores: Yeah, it's yet another dual-core 10.1-inch Android tablet. Yeah, there's a little more software lag than we'd like to see. Yeah, we've got wait for it to get Ice Cream Sandwich. Yeah, it's not the thinnest tablet you've ever picked up. Been there, done that, right?

But absolutely do not write off the A200. For $350 for the 16GB model, you could do worse. Now, that statement might well change in the next 6 months, as ASUS has a 7-inch quad-core tablet on the way for $250. (Insanity!) But for today. we're pretty impressed with the A200 after just a few minutes of use. 

Most of what you see is pretty familiar. Honeycomb is Honeycomb. But Acer's tossed in some interesting software improvements, including a lockscreen with quick-launch shortcuts, and a neat little "Ring" launcher that lives on top of the home screens, but only when you call for it to. It's an interesting differentiator, and it's nice to see a little work put into an otherwise interim version of Android.

Hit the break for our quick hands-on. And stick around for the end of the video for a little surprise.

More: Acer A200 specs; Acer A200 forums

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5 years ago

US Cellular offering $100 off smartphones, HTC Merge goes free


Looking to pick up a new Android device but having trouble deciding which device to get and which carrier to select? US Cellular is trying to make things enticing for customers by offering $100 off smartphones starting today, and the savings is instant. With this discount you can get the infamous HTC Merge for free, the Motorola ELECTRIFY for $149.99, and the  Android-powered Samsung Repp and Huawei Ascend II can be yours for the low price of just a penny.

Right now customers who switch to U.S. Cellular and choose one of its value-packed plans also receive double rewards points that can be used towards faster phone upgrades and free phones, ringtones and accessories. U.S. Cellular offers the only points-based rewards program in wireless along with other unique benefits, like Overage Protection and Battery Swap, which is one of the reasons it has the happiest customers in wireless.

Not bad, USCC. Anyone jumping at this one?

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5 years ago

Acer Iconia A200 now available at Best Buy for $349


Update: Watch our video hands-on!

As if deciding on an Android tablet wasn't hard enough now yet another one is available to make things harder. The Acer Iconia A200 is now available from Best Buy, both online and in stores, for $349. The A200 is a Honeycomb-based tablet, but all signs point to a mid-Febuary ICS update -- and there's a giant sticker on the box saying that an upgrade is coming. So, will this be your next tablet? Be sure to stay tuned as we review this bad boy!

Source: Best Buy; thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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5 years ago

White Samsung Galaxy Note launches in the UK Jan. 23, at John Lewis Oxford Street


Samsung has announced that the white version of its phone/tablet hybrid device, the Galaxy Note, will be launching in the UK from next Monday, Jan. 23. The catch is that for a limited time it'll only be available at the John Lewis store on Oxford Street, London, as part of an exclusivity deal between Samsung and the upmarket retailer.

Samsung's already seen considerable interest in the Note, which combines a 5.3-inch HD SuperAMOLED screen with stylus input and a 1.4GHz Exynos CPU. It announced in late December that it'd shipped one million units since the device's November launch.

If you're not in London, Samsung says that "additional channels" will begin offering the white Galaxy Note in February. However, if you do pick up your white Note at John Lewis, you'll be rewarded with £250 worth of "free music, films and e-books", presumably meaning some sort of voucher.

We've got the full press release after the break. For more on the Note, check out our full review.

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5 years ago

BlueStacks app player out of alpha, beta-bound "soon"



BlueStacks, that nifty little Android app player bound for PCs everywhere, is out of its alpha stage and heading into beta "soon." BlueStacks will sync the apps on your smartphone or tablet and store them in its own cloud, where they will then be accessbile on your Windows Vista or 7-powered PC. BlueStacks is free and works so well that it earned itself CNET's coveted "Best of CES" title at this year's show. Hit the source link to sign up for the beta and be sure to sing out when you become one of the lucky chosen ones. 

Source: BlueStacks

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