Major software update for Z1 series devices also brings new Sony UI
Sony has announced the rollout of Android 4.4 KitKat for the Xperia Z1, Z1 Compact and Z Ultra, starting today. The new firmware also includes updated Sony apps, such as Walkman, Album and Movies, and a refreshed UI — likely similar to what we've seen on the Xperia Z2. That's in addition to standard KitKat features like immersive mode and built-in cloud printing support.
We're not yet seeing the update on any of our devices, and Sony reminds us that rollout timing will vary depending on market and carrier, as per usual. So there many be a bit of wait before all devices are fully up to date.
Next up, The manufacturer says the Xperia Z, ZL, ZR and Tablet Z are due to get Android 4.4 from mid-Q2. And the Xperia T2 Ultra, Xperia E1 and Xperia M2 have also been added to the list for KitKat updates, though there's no firm timetable for those devices just yet.
Indian outlet Flipkart has announced that it'll exclusively begin stocking the Moto X in from tomorrow, Wednesday March 19. Prices start at Rs. 23,999, and judging by the retailer's promotional page it'll have the Moto X in seven color options, including the oak and teak backs that've only recently launched in the U.S.
Carphone Warehouse confirms sales to begin from around 4pm on launch day at select stores
UK retailer Carphone Warehouse has announced that it'll be selling the new HTC One —aka M8 — in select stores from "around 4pm" on the day of announcement, March 25. That means the phone will be available for Brits to buy "just minutes" after the announcement event in London wraps up — a potentially significant development for HTC, which will get its new handset into consumers' hands ahead of the arrival of Samsung's Galaxy S5.
"Shortly after [the announcement], the new HTC One (M8) handsets will be transported directly from the venue of the launch announcement to six Carphone Warehouse stores in London. Westfield Stratford, Westfield White City, Oxford Circus, Centrepoint and Tottenham Court Road stores will all be hosting special events celebrating the HTC launch with entertainment and giveaways as well as the first chance for customers to get their hands on the new device. Carphone Warehouse at Selfridges will also be stocking the handset from the same time."
There's no word on whether the M8 will also be available on March 25 in the U.S., but either way we'll be live from both the London and NYC launch events to bring you full coverage next Tuesday!
British mobile operator Three has unveiled its on-contract prices for Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S5, while also revealing that it'll be joining the GS5 pre-order party, with pre-orders available in-store and online from March 28. A Three-branded GS5 will set you back £69 upfront on Three's 24-month contracts, which start at £38 per month for 600 minutes and 2GB of data, moving up to £44 a month for unlimited minutes and data.
HTC has begun rolling out a second Android 4.4.2-based over-the-air update for the 2013 HTC One (M7) in some European customers. Today's 205MB update to version 4.19.401.11 follows the withdrawal of the earlier KitKat update due to "difficulties" experienced by some users. Today's OTA changelog references "support for more routers," suggesting incompatibility with certain Wifi equipment may have led to the earlier ROM being pulled.
Apple’s new cut-price iPhone model is still more expensive than many high-end Android phones
Apple has this morning launched an 8GB version of the iPhone 5c — a new budget offering for those willing to trade cut-down internal storage for a slightly reduced price tag. In the UK, a SIM-free 8GB iPhone 5c will set you back £429 directly from Apple’s online store — a saving of only £40 compared to the 16GB 5c, but a saving all the same.
Nevertheless, the 8GB device’s relatively high price tag highlights the many high-end Android phones around this price point, all of which boast 16GB or more of storage — and in some cases, many other advantages too.
A quick heads up for owners of T-Mobile's Samsung Galaxy S3 that a small software update should be heading your way. It keeps things on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and mainly includes fixes. Android Central Forums member jazman_777 does report that it seems to pre-load the Google Drive app on the phone.
The HTC leaks continue, with this video showing what appears to be Sense 6 running on a current HTC One. While it's alleged it's the same software we'll see on the new HTC One (M8), it does at least explain – so far – the presence of Beats in the video. There are a few interesting things to note from the video.
British mobile operator Vodafone has announced that it'll exclusively carry the gold color Samsung Galaxy S5 "from launch." The gold GS5, like other models, will go up for pre-order from next Friday, March 28, ahead of an April 11 launch.
HTC has just released another video in their Technical Translations series. The fourth and final episode tries to explain what an HTC Zoe is. We have actually explained it here already, but basically, a Zoe is a 3-second video clip that bookends when you actually hit the shutter button. Those Zoes can be later combined together to create video highlights.
In HTC’s words:
It’s super-organized, efficient, instant story-telling. It’s all your photos and movies automatically cut into highlights that you can share with your friends.
It looks like the HTC Zoe feature will be carried on to the all new HTC One. The video includes a teaser towards the end. A lot of things about the new device have been leaked already before the March 25th unveiling. Here’s what we’re expecting so far.
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