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3 years ago

HTC unveils entry-level Desire 500 for Taiwan


HTC has taken the wraps off its latest budget-focused smartphone for its home market of Taiwan. The Desire 500 packs a 4.3-inch WVGA (800x480) display, and is powered by a 1.2GHz Snapdragon 200 processor with 1GB of RAM and 4GB of storage, expandable via microSD. On the software side, the star of the show is the company's latest Sense 5 UI, which complete with the BlinkFeed home screen reader. Buyers will miss out on big-name HTC feautres like BoomSound and the Ultrapixel camera, however, as the Desire 500 comes with a standard 8-megapixel shooter and single rear speaker. Engadget is reporting a MSRP of NT$11,900 ($400), which might also make the 500 a tough sell.

Elsewhere, HTC has recently expanded Desire line in Eastern Europe with the Desire 200 and Desire 600.

Source: HTC; via: Engadget

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3 years ago

'Limited Edition' Motorola Droid Ultra leaks ahead of Verizon's NYC event


A design that checks all of the boxes for a Verizon 'Droid' phone

We're inside of 24 hours until Verizon does its thing in New York City, and we have a nice looking leak of an upcoming device expected at the event. Courtesy of HelloMotoHK, a close-up picture of a purported "Limited Edition" Droid Ultra has surfaced showing off a woven kevlar back and some special red coloring. The kevlar looks to be coated in an extremely shiny finish, and the dramatic red and black paint scheme along with prominent "Droid" branding makes sure you won't forget what carrier you're on. The red stripe is likely something reserved for the Limited Edition model -- which we've seen for previous devices -- but we wouldn't mind if some other crazy patterns were made available.

We got a nice look at a press render of the device's front a couple of weeks ago, but this is the first clear in-person look we've got of the back. We're not entirely sure where this particular device will fit into the lineup of phones we're expecting Verizon to show us tomorrow, but we won't have to wait long to find out.

Source: Droid-Life

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3 years ago

Invites for the LG G2 event in New York are making the rounds, and LG isn't keeping secrets


LG puts the G2 front and center in today's press invitation to New York on August 7.

LG's not even trying to hide it anymore, as a new round of press invites for their August 7 event in New York have went out, and they not only picture the G2, but name it in the text.

To be honest, we think this is a great thing. Everyone knows what LG has coming, everyone is excited about the new G2, and giving us pictures and dropping the name around makes us look forward to the event even more. As a refresher, what we expect to see inside the G2:

With those internals, it's no wonder that a lot of folks can't wait to see and hear more about the LG G2. We'll be there in New York, not just because it's our job to be there, but because we're also Android nerds are are pretty excited.

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3 years ago

LG offers a sneak peek at the G2 - it will learn from you, as long as the video doesn't give you a seizure


This video from LG promises the G2 will learn from you, but take your Dramamine before watching. 

We're all looking forward to seeing what LG's next -- dubbed the G2 (don't call it an Optimus) -- will have to offer. We thrive on details and specifications. LG's latest video teaser doesn't give us a lot of those, but it does focus on how the G2 will learn from you. That is, if the video doesn't give you a seizure first. 

We'll be on hand come August 7 when LG unveils the G2 in New York. For now, hit the break to see the latest video.

Source: LGMobileHQ on YouTube; LG's countdown page

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3 years ago

Canonical announces the Ubuntu Edge, complete with Indiegogo funding campaign


Canonical's dual-booting halo device will bring the specs every enthusiast has been asking for, provided it meets the $32 million funding goal

We just got off a call with Canonical, the folks behind the Ubuntu operating system, where we learned all about their latest project -- The Ubuntu Edge. The Edge will be an extremely high-spec'd convergence device, which dual-boots both Android and Ubuntu, and is ready to attach to a monitor and keyboard to make a full featured desktop replacement.

The Edge is being announced as an Indiegogo campaign, and Canonical is looking for a whopping $32 million. Mark Shuttleworth, Canonical founder, spent a while talking about this decision, as well as where Ubuntu is in the mobile world. Read past the break for more, as well as a few videos and more pictures.

The Ubuntu Edge indiegogo campaign page

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3 years ago

T-Mobile's HTC One gets fix for LTE data, stability


T-Mobile today announced an update to its HTC One that works on a trio of issues. Here's what's new in software version 1.27.531.11:

  • Software stability
  • LTE and reception
  • Processor enhancements

The update keeps things on Android 4.1.2 — we're not expecting 4.2.2 in the U.S. for a little while still — and weighs in at 247 megabytes.

Source: T-Mobile; more: HTC One forums; Thanks, Steve!

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3 years ago

Review: The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini


Is Sa​msung’s latest ‘Mini’ a mid-range champion or a disappointing compromise?

For better or worse, we’ve arrived in a world where smartphones with the word “mini” in their names also have 4.3-inch displays, once considered huge. The Galaxy S4 Mini is one of the first such devices to pass across our desk, having been launched at a glitzy London event alongside two other “Galaxy S4” smartphones — the S4 Active and S4 Zoom. Superficially, the Galaxy S4 Mini looks like its name would suggest — it’s a "miniature" Galaxy S4. The design, software and build quality remain mostly unchanged in the Mini. But as with any smaller, cheaper phone, corners have been cut in places. Specifically, the Mini’s screen has a lower resolution, there’s less internal storage, and certain heavily-advertised S4 features are missing.

Samsung’s Mini may be first to market, but it’ll soon be joined by the HTC One Mini and (probably) Motorola’s rumored Droid Mini, among others. So is the this device worthy of the premium brand it’s been gifted, or is it just a jumped-up mid-level phone? Find out after the break in our full-sized review of  the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini.

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3 years ago

Sony Xperia U now available for £125 in the UK


A quick heads-up for anyone looking for a solid entry-level handset — Sony's Xperia U is now available for £124.99 from UK retailer Expansys. That'll get you a basic but capable Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) smartphone, with a 1GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM, a 3.5-inch WVGA display and a 5-megapixel Sony Exmor R camera.

It's not going to win any prizes for tech specs, but the Xperia U is a nicely-designed handset that features Sony's unique glowing "transparent element" as part of its design. In our review last May, we praised the performance and build quality, and since then it's been upgraded to ICS, giving it a new lease of life. If you're after a decent, inexpensive Android phone, we can certainly think of worse ways to spend your money.

Source: Expansys

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3 years ago

T-Mobile offers free Lookout Premium subscriptions for Asurion PHP and Jump! customers


New partnership will help keep your personal data, and your phone, a little safer.

Lookout and T-Mobile have a special treat for customers who elect to purchase Asurion PHP (Premium Handset Protection) or enroll in T-Mobile's new Jump! program -- a free subscription to Lookout's premium features. 

If you're enrolled in the Asurion program, or have signed up for Jump!, and a current Lookout user, you should soon be getting an email about the new promotion telling you a little more information. The gist of it all is that in addition to the antivirus, find-my-phone and backup and restore options offered in the free version of Lookout, you'll also have access to photo backup, remote lock and wipe, Safe Browsing, and Lookout's privacy advisor.

This is very much like the partnership between US Cellular and NQ Mobile, and any trend that helps people keep their phones and personal data more safe is a very good thing -- we hope it continues.

These tools are pretty useful, and Lookout has a long history with Android. You may or may not find the antivirus features useful, but the monitoring ans security features are great to have. Look for your email soon!

Source: Lookout. Thanks, Jimmy!

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3 years ago

LG Enact revealed as another mid-range LTE handset for Verizon


Another device with uninspired design and LTE to fill out Verizon's end-of-year lineup

Verizon and LG have had a steady relationship of releasing mid-range devices to fill out its smart phone portfolio, and it looks like the LG Enact will be the latest in the series. Following in the footsteps of devices like the Lucid, Spectrum and Revolution, the Enact (aka VS890) looks to have a moderate screen size, four capacitive buttons (yes, menu button included) and typical branding in all the right places.

The interface looks to be the same as other recent LG phones, and considering that Chrome is highlighted as an app on the home screen we're likely looking at Android 4.1 or above loaded on the Enact. Look for this one to hit Verizon by the end of the year at a low price point on-contract.

Source: @evleaks

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3 years ago

From the mail bag: Activating device administrator for an app


Apps that can alter the default security policy can be powerful and handy, but you need to know why they are doing it before you say OK.

Carolyn writes,

I purchased the Unlock with WiFi app that Jerry recommended a few weeks ago. I haven't fully installed it to use yet because it asked to "activate device administrator". I wanted to be sure that was OK? What risks does it create to allow this type of access to my phone?


What an excellent question! Security on any smartphone is pretty darn important, and the simple fact is that most of the time when it gets compromised, it's because of something we did. I don't mean something crazy like installing cracked apps from a website you had to use Google Translate to read, though that's always a good way to compromise everything. I'm talking about changing device settings or just not using some functions because we don't fully understand them. The Device Administration API is a great example.

Originally baked into Android with version 2.2, the Device Admin API allows you to alter the remote or local security policy of your Android. We'll use my Unlock with Wifi app as a walkthrough of what that means after the break.

Have a question you need answered? (Preferably about Android, but we're flexible.) Hit up our Contact Page to get in touch!

More information about the Device Admin API

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3 years ago

Newer Android 4.3 build leaks for the Google Play Galaxy S4


Build JWR66V leaks out, and there's already a flashable zip for some TouchWiz GS4s

We're still a few days out from the event we presume will host the launch of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, but in the meantime we're seeing yet another leaked built of the upcoming OS. The second leaked build for the Google Play edition Samsung Galaxy S4 was built on July 8 and comes with an accompanying kernel built July 11.

It originally popped up on the XDA forums as an ODIN-flashable image for the Google Play GS4 (GT-i9505G), however it's now been repackaged into a flashable ROM for the European variant (GT-i9505) and certain U.S. and Canadian GSM GS4s. That means many users with TouchWiz Galaxy S4s can now try out Android 4.3 on their devices.

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3 years ago

Moto X. August 1. New York.


So that settles it. Moto's next big thing is set to be unveiled in New York City at the start of next month. Look closely in the bottom right corner and you'll even see the device modeled by Eric Schmidt late last week.

Needless to say, we'll be live from NYC on Aug. 1 to bring you full coverage of the Moto X launch.

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3 years ago

Galaxy Note 2 to skip Android 4.2, go straight to 'newer version,' says Aussie carrier


Note 2 could go from 4.1 to 4.3, Telstra document suggests

The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 might never see Android 4.2, but instead jump straight to the next version of the OS — presumably Android 4.3. In its latest update advisory, Australian carrier Telstra said of the Galaxy Note 2 4.2 update —

"Samsung have elected globally to skip the 4.2.2 update for this device and will instead go to a newer version of Android. No schedule has been provided for this update."

There's been no official confirmation of this from Samsung, nor do we know whether this situation might affect Note 2 devices outside of Australia. But with the Android 4.3 launch seemingly close at hand, it wouldn't surprise us to see certain Android 4.1 phones skip directly to this next version of Jelly Bean.

While Android 4.2 is a relatively minor update for skinned devices, the extra time needed to roll out 4.3 could result Note 2 waiting a little longer for new TouchWiz features. In any case, hopefully the update situation will become clearer once Google officially unveils Android 4.3, something which is expected to occur at next Wednesday's San Francisco press event.

Source: Telstra

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini UK availability and pricing [Updated]


Coming to CPW, Phones4u, O2, Vodafone and EE; first SIM-free prices​ starting to appear

Yesterday saw the official unveiling of the HTC One Mini — the manufacturer's miniaturized, lower-priced version of its current flagship. And we've published a full hands-on preview, walking through the device's features and comparing it to the full-sized One, as well as Samsung's rival Galaxy S4 Mini.

Over the past day we've started to see the first signs of when and where UK buyers will be able to pick up the device. Network operators O2 and Vodafone have confirmed on Twitter that they'll be offering the One Mini for sale — O2 says it's "coming soon," while Voda promises an August launch. EE spokesperson confirmed to Android Central that it'll be offering the HTC One Mini on its 4G network, but didn't offer any pricing or release date. 

Independent retailer Phones4u also has a pre-order page up for the silver One Mini, and promises £50 Google Play credit for pre-orders on EE, or £25 for all other networks. On the SIM-free side, Handtec is the first British retailer to post a pre-order price for the device — £379.99 inc. VAT, or £316.66 exc. VAT. Carphone Warehouse is the only retailer offering a similar price — £379.95 — with an Aug. 9 release date.

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