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2 years ago

Verizon getting 5 inches of Android in the LG Intuition on Sept. 6 for $199

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It's not all that much of a surprise at this point, but it finally is official. Verizon this morning announced that it'll carry the LG Intuition, the U.S. carrier's version of what the rest of the world knows as the LG Optimus Vu. The Vu, as you know from our full review, was LG's answer to the Samsung Galaxy Note, which ushered in the 5-inches-plus era of Android smartphones. The Intuition/Vu did so in a unique way, however, with a 4:3 aspect ratio, giving the whole thing a much more square feel than traditional smartphones.

The Intuition will launch with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, be we imagine it'll end up with a Jelly Bean update at some point.

It'll be available online Sept. 6 and in stores Sept. 10 for $199 on contract.

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2 years ago

New Sony Xperia phones get tentative eurozone pricing

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The first European pricing information for Sony's new Xperia T, Xperia V and Xperia J smartphones has come to light, as several German retailers have put the devices up for pre-order. According to online stores Idealo and notebooksbilliger, the high-end Xperia T is listed with a €549 price tag, while the LTE-enabled Xperia V will set you back €580. Meanwhile, the budget-focused Xperia J will apparently sell for €265. These prices roughly equate to £450 for the T and £210 for the J for British consumers (with no LTE networks in the UK, it's unlikely we'll get the Xperia V at all). These are also SIM-free prices, so as ever, if you pick one of these up with a contract, you can expect to pay considerably less.

We've already seen one UK retailer report SIM-free pricing for the Xperia J, and with a SIM-free pre-order price of £190, Clove's pricing closely matches what we're seeing from these German retailers.

Pre-order prices are always subject to change, but with so many retailers reporting the same RRP, it's likely the final pricing won't stray too far from that mark. Sony's new Xperia phones are expected to appear from tomorrow, Sept. 5, starting at UK retailer the Carphone Warehouse.

Source: XperiaBlog

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2 years ago

Sony Xperia T appears in promo shot with AT&T branding

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Last week we learned all about Sony's new flagship smartphones at IFA 2012, however there was nothing offered in the way of U.S. release information. Today that may have changed, as the Sony's new international flagship, the Xperia T, has appeared in a promotional photo bearing AT&T's globe logo.

The image comes from UK retailer Phones4U, which has published it alongside a number of shots of the European Xperia T. That phone has Sony's Xperia branding under the screen, while the final promotional image swaps it out for the U.S. carrier's logo. Also of note is the back of this AT&T Xperia T, which is split up into three segments. On the international version, which we saw at IFA last week, the phone's back panel is smooth, with no dividers at the top or bottom. One possible reason for this design change might be to enable 4G LTE connectivity.

In any case, we've reached out to AT&T for comment, and we'll update this post with any info they provide.

Source: Phones4U; Thanks, Paolo!

​More: Hands-on with Sony's latest at IFA

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2 years ago

HTC Desire X gets SIM-free pricing in the UK

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The first pricing information for HTC's new Desire X has become available over at an online UK-based retailer. Clove Technology is now listing the Desire X for pre-order with a SIM-free price of £228 inc. VAT (£190 exc. VAT). The phone, which is offered in "stealth black" and "neutral white," is expected to begin shipping in Europe later this month.

As we discovered during our hands-on time with the HTC Desire X, it's a nicely balanced mid-range smartphone, with a few outstanding features, including a 5MP BSI rear camera a sharp SuperLCD display and a dual-core Snapdragon S4 CPU. Around the £200 mark, you'll be hard pushed to find a similarly-spec'd device, and HTC's Sense 4 remains one of our favorite Android UIs.

More pre-order info can be found at the source link. If you're still on the fence about the Desire X, be sure to check out our hands-on coverage of the phone from IFA 2012.

Source: Clove

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2 years ago

Sony releases binaries to support JBQ AOSP project

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Last month Google’s Android Open Source Project lead Jean-Baptiste Queru (JBQ) announced the launch of an “experimental” project to bring the latest open-source Android to the Sony Xperia S (LT26). Sony quickly confirmed its support of the project, and today it’s followed through with the release of closed-source binaries to allow the project to continue. These are blobs of compiled code (e.g. graphics firmware) that cannot be open-sourced, but which must be built in advance in order for any AOSP build to work on Xperia S hardware.

In addition, Sony has reaffirmed its commitment to open-source Android “and the innovation it brings.” The company says that with the help of the proprietary files that have been provided, it expects the AOSP build should be capable of booting up and reaching the home screen.

The binaries are available to download from Sony’s developer world site at the source link. While the binaries won’t be of any use to custom ROM enthusiasts, they just might result in the quicker arrival of more stable AOSP builds for the Xperia S. There’s a long way left to go before Xperia S owners will be able to download and build open-source Android for their devices, but this is an important step along the way. We’ll be watching with interest in the months ahead.

Source: Sony Developer World

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2 years ago

First signs of SIM free pricing emerge for Sony Xperia J

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We've already had the first wave of information on when the new Sony devices announced at IFA will be available, but any information on price is still somewhat lacking. At least one British retailer has tagged a price on the entry-level Xperia J, despite not being able to offer it themselves until October. 

Clove Technology has come out and priced the Xperia J at £190, but will not have stock available until late October. This is a little after the September 5 release date previously supplied by other retailers, but it's the first indication we've received of a UK RRP for the new device. 

Clove also intends to stock the full range of colors for the Xperia J, but notes that the first units will only be available in black or white. 

Source: Clove Blog

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2 years ago

Here are the Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE full training materials and specs

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We've been looking at bits and pieces of info about the Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE over the weekend, and now thanks to an insider we've got the full set of training materials available -- including the full technical specs. The Victory looks to be one very solid phone, and should appeal to folks who want or need something a little smaller than the Galaxy S3 (Galaxy S III) but still expect decent performance. Here's the obligatory bullet point list:

  • CDMA, LTE, 850/900/1800/1900mHz, UMTS dual-band, 1700/2100 mHz
  • 1.2 GHz Dual Core Qualcomm/MSM8960 Lite
  • Dimensions 4.8 x 2.5 x 0.5 (inches)
  • 4.0” WVGA TFT screen at 800 x 480
  • 4GB ROM
  • Up to 1 GB external MicroSD (we assume this is a typo and the phone will support 32GB cards)
  • MicroUSB
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • 3.8v, lithium ion, 2100mAh battery (up to 7 hours talk time; 9 days standby time)
  • Android 4.0.4  Ice Cream Sandwich with TouchWiz
  • Audio codecs: AAC, AMR, AWB, M4A, MID, MP3 OGG, QCP, WAV, WMA
  • Video codecs: DivX, H.263, H.264, MPEG4, RV, WMV
  • 5.0MP camera with 4x zoom and video recording
  • 1.3MP front facing camera
  • Wifi
  • Bluetooth
  • Media Hub
  • Social Hub
  • Accelerometer
  • Spanish language support
  • Hearing aid compatible M4

The materials show this one headed for Sprint as rumored, but also show quad-band GSM support so we expect to see something similar on other networks Of course all the TouchWiz and Ice Cream Sandwich features are on board, like Media Hub and Android Beam. It's safe to say that a scant six months ago these specs would have been at the top of the Android heap, so the Victory should be a great little performer.

Still no exact word on when we'll see this one on Sprint's shelves, but as we saw yesterday reps are training for a September release. Hit the break for the full set of 26 training slides.

Thanks, anon!

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2 years ago

US Cellular getting the LG Splendor (US730), as outed by product page

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Behold, the LG Splendor for US Cellular. This unannounced phone has been outed by a now--pulled LG product page and still-alive product brochure, as spotted by an eagle-eyed SmartPhenom. It looks to be a decent device, with a 4.3-inch display at 800x480 resolution, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and a 5-megapixel rear camera. It's all powered by a Qualcomm MSM8655 processor running at 1 GHz. Battery's listed at 1700 mAh. There's 2 GB of on-board storage, and the Splendor will take a microSD card as well. Top of the line? Nah. But it should be a decent addition to USCC's lineup if and when it's announced.

Source: LG Splendor brochure (pdf); via SmartPhenom

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2 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE gets a few more details

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We've received a few more specs for the Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE, an upcoming (but as yet unannounced) Sprint Android smartphone whose existence we revealed on Saturday.

Until now, all we had was the name, the suffix of which obviously (and obtusely) points out that it'll run on Sprint's fledgling 4G LTE network. Thanks to a tipster, we can now nail down a few more details:

  • The Galaxy Victory will have a 4-inch display. That's decidedly smaller than the Galaxy S3 with its 4.8-inch display. No word yet on the technology behind the display. 
  • It'll be running Android 4.0, with TouchWiz atop it. No surprise there, and we'd expect it to be announced (and eventually launch) with one of the updated versions of Ice Cream Sandwich. As for a possible upgrade to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean before launch? We wouldn't bet the farm on it. But then again it's not like we have any dates for the phone in the first place.
  • The Galaxy Victory will have NFC on board. the Android Beam feature inherent to Ice Cream Sandwich will be there as well, as will Samsung's own S Beam, which uses NFC to initiate a Wifi-direct connection to another S Beam-enabled device, like the Galaxy S3. (Figure this will be a standard feature in new Samsung phones at this point.)
  • Judging from the renders on the pages sent to us, it'll be lacking a physical home button, and it appears to have four capacitive buttons below the display. 
  • It'll have Google Wallet at its disposal.

That's still pretty thin. So we've got a 4-inch Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich smartphone with NFC, Google Wallet and TouchWiz, and it looks like it'll only have capacitive buttons. All in all, a mid-range 2012 Samsung smartphone, we gather. But let's hold off any sort of real judgment until this thing's official and in our hot little hands, we suppose.

We've got more screenies after the break for your perusal. 

Thanks, anon!

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Huawei Ascend D1 Quad XL

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When we first got wind of the Huawei Ascend D Quad XL, it was an afterthought at the company's Mobile World Congress press conference. Aside the D Quad, which shipped with a 1800 mAh battery, the Ascend D Quad XL would offer a more substantial 2600mAh. At that show, however, only the D Quad was present -- the D Quad XL was nowhere to be seen.

But at IFA 2012 this week, the newly-renamed (we'll leave it up to you to work out why) Ascend D1 Quad XL was proudly displayed at the Huawei booth for all to see. The software it was running closely resembled what we'd seen on the original D Quad back in February -- Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, backed up by a proprietary Huawei UI layer (though not the Emotion UI we've seen emerge in recent weeks). On the inside, you'll find the same hardware powering the show -- Huawei's own quad-core 1.4GHz CPU, which has still yet to see the light of day in a released product.

All in all, it's a thicker, bulkier version of the D1 Quad, and one which should see you through a few more hours of regular use. We've got hands-on video after the break, along with a few more photos.

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2 years ago

Leaked materials show Samsung Victory 4G LTE coming to Sprint this month

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According to this Sprint internal employee promotion, the Samsung Victory 4G LTE should be on the shelves at your local Sprint store sometime in September. News that Samsung will be pushing out a bunch of mid-range Android phones has been kicking around for a week or so, but here's the first official looking word from a carrier about one of them. The supposed specs are a Qualcomm S4 with a 480x800 display and NFC, so it should be more than capable.

What we know for sure is that Sprint reps will get an extra $3 for selling you one in September, and they can't do that unless they are in stock. We'll be waiting for an official announcement.

Thanks, Anon!

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Intel-powered ZTE Grand X IN

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We first saw the ZTE Grand X in July in London, where the Tegra 2-powered smartphone was billed as a mid-range gaming-focused handset. Fast forward a couple of months, and we've come across a new variant at the Intel booth at IFA 2012 in Berlin. The ZTE Grand X IN closely resembles its Tegra 2-powered brother, except lurking inside this model is an Intel Atom Z2460 CPU, making it one of the few Intel-powered Android 4.x handsets out there.

The only cosmetic difference is the "Intel Inside" badge on the device's rear -- aside from that, it's identical to the version we saw in England in July. On the software side, it's still running Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich, with only a few custom additions from ZTE. The software remains mostly stock on the Intel-powered version, though obviously some of the Tegra-powered extras are absent on this model.

Check out our hands-on video above. The ZTE Grand X IN should ve hitting store shelves sometime in Q3.

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2 years ago

Hands on with Ice Cream Sandwich on the Intel powered Orange San Diego

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When we first reviewed the Intel Atom powered Orange San Diego back in May, one of the biggest drawbacks to the device was Gingerbread. While the experience with the device was on the whole reasonably pleasurable, there's just no getting away from how outdated Gingerbread has started to feel. 

All that is about to change though for Intel devices. The ZTE Grand X IN was announced earlier this week running Android 4.0, and at the Intel booth today at IFA 2012 in Berlin, we found an Orange San Diego also running Ice Cream Sandwich. Furthermore, an Intel representative told us that the update will begin pushing out sometime during September, although couldn't be more specific than that. What Intel did say is that from their side, all the hard work is done, and the software build is complete. 

But there's more. As you can see here -- and from our hands on video after the break --  the San Diego is running on stock ICS. And, aside from the slightly odd screen resolution of the San Diego -- another of our less favored points -- tainting the appearance a little, it seems to run really nicely. It's smooth, it's snappy, and it's impressive to see that Intel is now starting to make a real push forward. 

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2 years ago

Huawei Ascend D1 Quad XL to launch in Germany in October

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First announced way back at Mobile World Congress in February, the Huawei Ascend D Quad and D Quad XL have both faded into obscurity since. After causing a bit of a stir with what at the time were very impressive specs, many were excited to get their hands on the devices. Fast forward 6 months to IFA 2012 in Berlin, and it seems that we finally have an answer over when the Ascend D1 Quad XL -- it seems to have gained a 1 in the name now --  at least will be coming to market. It's still an impressive device, but as the months have passed since MWC it no longer stands out quite so much as it once may have done.

Announcing the information at IFA, Huawei says the D Quad XL will be launching in Germany from the end of October. It will be available in two colors, matte black and ceramic white for an off-contract price of €499 (£395/$625).

For those not familiar, the 4.5 inch Quad XL stands above the regular D Quad by the inclusion of a pretty hefty 2600mAh battery, which Huawei says is good for 500 hours of standby time. The device is powered by Huawei's own K3V2 1.2GHz quad-core processor, backed up by 1GB of RAM and 8GB of on-board storage, which is expandable by microSD card. The full press release can be found after the break.

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2 years ago

Hands on with Huawei's Emotion UI

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Huawei recently announced its new interface layer for upcoming Android phones, dubbed the Huawei Emotion UI 1.0. Despite being announced a couple of months back, so far it's only been available in Chinese. But at IFA 2012 today, we tracked down the new UI running on an Ascend P1 at the manufacturer's booth. It's a fairly drastic departure from the way Android normally works, as there's no traditional app drawer, with all app shortcuts being displayed on the device's homescreen instead.

Huawei's also introduced a host of modular, customizable widgets to display personal info, contacts, weather forecasts and other pertinent data. And as far as visuals go, the Emotion UI ships with several skins that completely change the look of the UI, including one inspired by stock Android 4.0.

Check out our video for a quick preview of what to expect in Huawei's new Emotion UI software.

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