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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Z1 f launches in Japan

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Miniature Xperia Z1 hits Docomo amid rumors of upcoming international version

As expected, today's the day the Sony Xperia Z1 f hits store shelves in Japan. The Docomo-branded phone is effectively a shrunk-down version of the Xperia Z1, Sony's current high-end handset. However unlike many "mini" versions of flagship smartphones, the Z1 f retains the high-end internals of its big brother — including a Snapdragon 800 CPU, 2GB of RAM and a 20.7-megapixel Exmor RS camera unit — all packed into a smaller chassis with a 4.3-inch 720p display.

Full price for the phone is listed at ¥79,800 ($768), which is reduced when buying on contract. The device comes in white, black, lime and pink color options.

The Japanese launch comes as rumors swirl surrounding a possible international version for the Xperia Z1 f. A device codenamed "Anami" recently passed through the FCC looking very similar to the Japanese model, but with radio bands suggesting it may be a European handset. The name "Xperia Z1 S" has been suggested as a possible name for an international version, and if the reports are accurate then it's possible we could see this device at Sony's CES 2014 press conference in early January.

Source: Docomo

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3 years ago

'Merlot red' Samsung Galaxy Note 3 launches in Korea

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When Samsung announced its new Galaxy Note 3 color options earlier this month, it said they'd be launched according to market preferences. And now we have our first indication of what that means for the company's native land — Korean consumers will have the chance to pick up the Note 3 in vivid "merlot red." The red Galaxy Note 3 launches today on Korean carrier SKT, and is targeted at "passionate and stylish men and women of all ages."

The red variant joins the original three — classic white, jet black, blush pink — as well as the new rose gold white and rose gold black announced alongside merlot red a few weeks back.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow (Korean)

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3 years ago

Bamboo Moto X now ships by the end of the year

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Heads up, folks: Just got an e-mail from Motorola saying that the new bamboo-backed Moto X will now be delivered on or before Dec. 27.

Good news! We previously estimated your Moto X with Bamboo to ship in January, however we’ve been able to work some magic.

Your Moto X with Bamboo will now be delivered to you on or before 12/27.  No need to call us—we’ll keep you updated on our progress and let you know when it has shipped via email.

And that is that. The bamboo version still carries a $100 premium. 

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3 years ago

Sprint's HTC One getting an update for HD Voice, bugfixes

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Word on the street is that Sprint's version of the HTC One is in the midst of a software update today. Still no KitKat — we're looking to January for that — but some update is better than none. The sparse changelog (on the device, anyway) reads thusly:

  • HD Voice enhancements
  • Fixes and invalid alert message after inserting SIM card successfully

Good fixes, it sounds like. The update brings you to software version 3.05.651.5 and weighs in at about 250 megabytes.

More: Sprint HTC One forums; image via @GoodByeBluMnday

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3 years ago

Red HTC One Max launching in Taiwan

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Hot on the heels of the black variant that appeared first in Hong Kong last week, HTC has launched a red version of the 5.9-inch One Max in its home territory of Taiwan. Hardware-wise the red Max is identical to the silver version — including the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner — but sports a red plastic trim in addition to the anodized coating found on its metal parts. That gives it a pretty striking appearance, perhaps more so than the red HTC One, which has black accents.

The red HTC One is available now from local retailers priced NT$23,900 (around $804.) There's no word of any plans to launch the red version in other markets.

More: HTC One Max review

Source: Engadget Chinese

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3 years ago

Gold HTC One now available in the UK

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UK retailers selling golden handset on-contract

Remember the gold HTC One? No, not the real gold HTC One — the one that's still made of aluminum but has a pale gold-colored exterior. The most exclusive of all the HTC One colors is now available from UK retailers Carphone Warehouse and Phones 4u. Both outlets are selling the phone on-contract, but apparently not SIM-free, so you'll need to sign up for a monthly plan to get your hands on the champagne-hued device.

Carphone Warehouse and Phones 4u have deals on all the major UK networks except Three, with prices ranging between £17 and £62 per month depending on monthly data allowances and how much you want to pay upfront for the phone. The cheapest deal for a "free" gold HTC One is a £29 per month plan on Vodafone with 1GB of 3G data.

Source: Carphone Warehouse, Phones 4u

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3 years ago

Pink Samsung Galaxy S4 arriving at Phones 4u in January

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New color variant available to pre-order now

UK retailer Phones 4u has scooped up yet another color exclusive — this time the Samsung Galaxy S4 in pink, which will be available from early January. The device comes with a light pink front and back, similar to the "blush pink" Galaxy Note 3, and sports a new bronze-color trim around its edges. P4u says it'll have exclusivity over the pink Galaxy S4 throughout January, and a pre-order page is live right now.

The pink GS4 will be sold on contract with prices starting at £33 per month for 3G (with 1GB of data on Vodafone) and £38 per month for 4G (6GB, also on Vodafone). And 4G buyers will get a free wireless speaker valued at £120 to sweeten the deal, the retailer says.

So... any takers?

More: Phones 4u

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S4 Active LTE-A headed to Korea

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New Galaxy S4 Active model for SKT features Snapdragon 800, faster data and upgraded camera

Samsung has unveiled a new version of the Galaxy S4 Active in its home country, featuring an upgraded CPU, faster data speeds and an updated camera that brings it in line with the company's other 2013 flagships. The device boasts LTE-Advanced data speeds of up to 150Mbps, and as such it runs Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 CPU as opposed to the Snapdragon 600 used in the global GS4 Active. The camera is now a 13-megapixel unit, up from 8 megapixels on the original.

Like the global model the GS4 Active LTE-A is IP67-certified, meaning it's resistant to dust and water — for up to 30 minutes at three feet — and there's also a 1080p LCD display and 32GB of internal storage and a 2,600mAh battery.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 Active with LTE-A will be headed to Korean carrier SKT, priced at 900,000 won (around $855).

Source: SamMobile, Samsung (Korean)

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3 years ago

Verizon's HTC One getting Android 4.3 today

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469MB update brings the HTC One to Android 4.3 and fixes a few bugs

Folks with an HTC One on Verizon should start checking for a software update, as the OTA to Android 4.3 is pushing out now. The update to 4.3 also carries a few other minor changes:

  • OS Upgrade to Android Jelly Bean 4.3
  • VZ Cloud application can back up contacts, photos and more
  • Ability to add your music to video highlights

Check your device through the settings menu, then head into the forums to discuss.

Thanks everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

Android 4.3 update hitting AT&T Galaxy Note 2

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OTA brings Galaxy Gear support, KNOX security and new TouchWiz features

The AT&T Galaxy Note 2 is the latest Samsung device to receive an update to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean which. And as we've come to expect from Samsung updates of this kind, the firmware brings a bunch of new Samsung features alongside the newer Android OS version.

There's support for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch and Samsung's KNOX enterprise security suite, along with new "premium suite" features including a refreshed Galaxy Note 3-style multi-window mode, Easy Mode for a simplified UI in the launcher and other apps, and new camera features including Sound & Shot.

The update is rolling out over the air right now, so head to Settings > About phone > Software updates to get started — the build number to look for is I317UCUBMK6. If you're updating today, join the discussion in our AT&T Galaxy Note 2 forum.

More: AT&T Samsung Galaxy Note 2 forum

Source: AT&T

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3 years ago

EE to preview LG G Flex in-store ahead of February launch

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Bendy, curvy phone on display at ten EE stores from Friday, Dec. 20

UK operator EE will be getting the LG G Flex early next year, but it's giving Brits the chance to preview the phone in-store in the run up to the holidays. From this Friday, Dec. 20, ten EE stores will have the G Flex on display, including locations in London, Kent, Nottingham, Manchester, Brighton, Cambridge, Merry Hill and Sheffield.

But if you want to actually buy the LG G Flex on EE you'll need to do a little more waiting, as the carrier says it won't be available until February 2014. Unsurprisingly, the company isn't saying anything about pricing at this early stage either.

The G Flex sports a curved 6-inch display with 720p resolution, and its frame is designed to flex and withstand up to 88 pounds of force. The device also packs rear-mounted buttons like the LG G2, and a back panel designed to "self-heal" from minor scratches.

We've got more in our LG G Flex preview, where we take a look at the Korean version of the phone. Check past the break for the full rundown of EE stores previewing the G Flex this Friday.

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3 years ago

Android 4.4.2 OTA for the Google Play edition Sony Z Ultra rolling out

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Show stopping bugs addressed in the bump to KOT49H

We still don't yet have the URL for side loading, but the 4.4.2 OTA for the Sony Z Ultra GPe is starting to push out. We knew an update was coming "soon" to fix some of the issues we've seen with the phone, and we saw the LG G Pad — the other new Google Play device — get its own update today. Sony and Google have managed to get the software updated before the devices gets into too many hands.

It's confirmed that the 444MB update fixes the security settings bug, the app uninstall bug, the clear data bug and random issues with Google Now voice commands. 

We're up all night to get lucky try and find the URL for this one (I gotta have it myself) and we'll update when and if we come across it.

Update: Nobody can seem to capture a standard URL for this one, but thanks to sfagundes. we have a mirror for side loading. Grab it here. Thanks, Sean!

Thanks, Matthew!

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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Z1 arrives on China Mobile with a few hardware differences

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Build differences, 32GB internal storage and TD-LTE support for Chinese variant

Sony's latest Android flagship, the Xperia Z1, has today landed on China's largest carrier, the state-owned China Mobile. The Chinese Z1 looks much the same as its international cousin — from a distance, at least — and sports a similar spec sheet to its global counterpart. There's a 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 CPU, 2GB of RAM, a 5-inch Triuminos 1080p display, 3000mAh battery and 20.7-megapixel rear camera. 

But there are some key differences to be found the China Mobile Xperia Z1, which carries the model number L39t. There's 32GB of built-in storage, versus 16GB on the global version. What's more, the frame around the outside of the device is reportedly plastic like the Xperia Z and Z Ultra, not metal as on the global Z1. The position of the headphone jack is more centralized, and the noise-canceling speaker is now found behind a small hole in the glass back. In fact, the Chinese model is a dead ringer for the alleged T-Mobile U.S. version that leaked out a couple of months back.

The new Xperia Z1 variant also supports TD-LTE bands used by China Mobile, as well as TD-SCDMA and GSM.

The Chinese Xperia Z1 is running software based on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean; presumably an update to 4.3 will follow at some point given that version's recent arrival on international Z1 devices. In any case, the new and slightly different Sony Xperia Z1 is slated launch on China Mobile for 4,499 yuan ($724) in black and purple flavors around the end of the month.

Source: XperiaBlog, ePrice

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3 years ago

More HTC Android 4.3 updates landing this week

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4.3 rolling out now for HTC One Mini; Verizon HTC One OTA due this week; international One Max also getting bugfix update

More Android 4.3 updates are arriving for certain HTC One series handsets this week. First up, the international HTC One Mini is getting an over-the-air update to version 2.12.401.1, based on Android 4.3 and HTC Sense 5.5, which brings it in line with the European HTC One. The update includes all the features we've previously seen Sense 5.5 updates for the One and One Max, including a re-vamped BlinkFeed and additional gallery and video highlight features.

Next is the Verizon HTC One, which had its Android 4.3 update delayed around a month and a half ago. According to a tweet by Mo Versi, HTC's Executive Director of Product Management, Verizon's M7 should be getting its Android 4.3 OTA this week after the update received technical approval from the carrier. It's unclear whether this update will be based on Sense 5.5 or the older Sense 5.0, however.

And finally the international version of the HTC One Max is getting a selection of bug fixes in an update now heading out to European handsets. Version 1.54.401.1 — still based on Android 4.3 — includes fixes for touch responsiveness, SIM card detection, Wifi connectivity and general system stability. In addition, the update resolves issues when posting HTC Shares to Facebook, and improves performance for the battery-toting HTC Power Flip Case.

Next up is Android 4.4 KitKat, which is already rolling out to unlocked and developer edition HTC Ones in the U.S., and due to land internationally by the end of January.

Source: XDA; @moversi; Thanks, Shen!

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Core Advance brings new accessibility features

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New features for disabled and visually impaired users in latest Samsung mid-ranger

Samsung has today announced a new mid-range smartphone, the Galaxy Core Advance. With a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU, 1GB of RAM, a 4.7-inch WVGA display, a 2,000mAh battery and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean running the show, the Galaxy Core Advance doesn't stand out much in terms of specs. But Samsung is highlighting a range of new accessibility options on this device, designed to make it easier to use for disabled users and those with visual impairments.

A new optical scan feature uses the camera to recognize text, and reads it aloud. A new light-sensing feature can detect the direction and brightness of light. And an instant voice recorder app allows users to make quick spoken notes. "Screen curtain" allows the device to be operated with a black screen, "to ensure privacy and save battery life." A voice-guided camera app can also provide audio feedback on the picture being taken, for example giving the number of faces detected in the image.

The Galaxy Core Advance also sports a soft-touch plastic rear, much like the black Galaxy Note 3, in place of the glossy plastic more commonly found on Samsung smartphones. And there's a Galaxy S4 Active-style physical button setup on the front of the device, presumably to allow users to more easily feel each button before pressing.

Samsung says Galaxy Core Advance will be made available in "deep blue" and "pearl white" color options early in 2014.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow

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