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3 years ago

Oppo N1 'CyanogenMod Edition' will run CM out of the box

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Limited edition N1 comes with CM as standard

Chinese manufacturer Oppo has announced that it'll ship a limited edition version of its new N1 handset with aftermarket firmware CyanogenMod as the default operating system. Regular Oppo N1 devices, which run the company's Android 4.2-based ColorOS as standard, will already support the ability to install CM through the stock recovery, but the difference with the CM edition is it'll arrive running CyanogenMod software out of the box. In addition to all of CM's features and a visual style closer to stock Android, the device will also include "extra CyanogenMod accessories" — stickers, packaging and cases featuring the CM and Oppo mascots.

As you'd expect from the close partnership between Oppo and CM, CyanogenMod on the N1 will fully support the device's array of wacky features.

"The CyanogenMod team has tailored their software to specifically support all of the unique features of the OPPO N1 including the O-Touch back touch panel, O-Click Bluetooth remote control, the revolutionary rotating camera, and also unique features from ColorOS such as double tap to wake and screen-off gestures."

The Oppo N1 CyanogenMod Edition will debut internationally in December, priced the same as the regular N1 — that's 3498 yuan in China, which translates into around $570 or £360.

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3 years ago

The Nexus 5 vs. the LG G2

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The newest Androids from LG are similar, but there are still plenty of differences

Google releases one Nexus phone each year, and there is always plenty of competition from Android vendors to compare it to. We're going to have a look at how the new LG Nexus 5 stands up against the best of the competition, and the LG G2 seemed like the logical place to start.

A lot of folks are under the impression that the Nexus 5 is just the G2 with the buttons moved to the "normal" location. While they certainly share some of the same components, and have some of the same hardware features, they are two very different animals. 

Hit the break and have a look.

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3 years ago

Best Buy doing a blue Galaxy S4 for AT&T, Sprint and Verizon

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Best Buy this morning announced that it'll carry a "Blue Arctic" (no, not Arctic Blue) Samsung Galaxy S4 starting Nov. 18. Preorders begin Nov. 10. You'll be able to get one for use on AT&T, Verizon or Sprint.

Here's how pricing breaks down:

  • Verizon: $249.99 with a two-year contract.
  • AT&T and Sprint: $199.99 with a two-year contract.
  • Outright: $749.99

The phone will be available online or in stores.

Source: Best Buy

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3 years ago

The Nexus 5 speaker: Yes, there's only one — and software may be hurting what you hear [updated]

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Audio output sounds great in some apps — and lousy in others​, especially with spoken-word playback

Two things you need to know about the the speakers on the Nexus 5: First, there's only one speaker. Never mind that you see a pair of speaker grilles — there's only one speaker hidden back there. As we first learned on the LG G2 — a close cousin, insofar as the hardware goes — there's a speaker, and there's a microphone. Not two speakers. That's been confirmed by iFixit's teardown, as well, not that it was a surprise. Stick your finger over one of the speakers and it's readily apparent.

There other thing we've discovered is that the Nexus 5 speaker can be pretty decent, or it can be downright horrible — and it appears that software may be to blame here.

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3 years ago

Samsung plans own CPU core tech, 560ppi displays for future phones

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Details revealed at analyst event point to 2014 phones with 64-bit CPUs and 5.25-inch 1440p displays

In its first analyst event of the smartphone era, Samsung revealed a few juicy details about the technology behind its future smartphone plans. In slides released in conjunction with the event, the electronics giant confirmed plans to develop its own CPU core technology, as opposed to licensing designs from ARM as it does now. The slide on Samsung's 64-bit CPU plans shows a two-step approach, first developing 64-bit cores based on ARM designs, then moving to its own bespoke designs, similar to the way Qualcomm operates. The plans could be seen as a way for Samsung's phones to become even more vertically-integrated. Some current Samsung phones use Exynos SoCs manufactured in-house, but these use Cortex A15 and A7 designs licensed from ARM.

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3 years ago

Carphone Warehouse no longer selling Nexus 5 SIM-free

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'Limited number' of SIM-free handsets now sold out

If you wanted to get hold of a Nexus 5 from Carphone Warehouse at the staggeringly good SIM-free price of £295 then hopefully you were quick off the mark last Friday. The UK retailer is no longer offering the device without a contract, and as such its online store no longer lists a SIM-free price. A spokesperson told Android Central that only a "limited number" of SIM-free Nexus 5s were available and that these have now sold out. From this point forward all of Carphone Warehouse's Nexus 5 stock will be contract-only, with prices starting at £21 per month.

While that's bad news for anyone wanting to get hold of a Nexus 5 immediately, some variants of the device are still available from the UK Google Play Store, albeit with a short delay. The white models are marked as ready to leave Google's warehouse by this Friday, Nov. 8. Meanwhile the black 32GB model is sold out, and orders for the the 16GB version in black won't be despatched for another 2-3 weeks.

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3 years ago

How to unlock the Nexus 5 bootloader

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It's easier to unlock your Nexus 5 bootloader than it is to decide if you want to do it

If you're receiving your shiny new Nexus 5 in the near future, you'll want to think about unlocking the boot loader. It's a bigger undertaking than the folks on the Internet make it out to be, and doing it later is a huge pain in the kiester, so it's worth talking about. 

First things first. Since it's a Nexus device, it was designed to be easily unlocked. There is no extra encryption layer, no signing your life and warranty away at the website of the people who made your phone, and no software hacks to try to bust your way around things. You only need the SDK and be able to use the command line — which are things you need to know about before you ever decide to unlock your phone anyway.

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini now available on Rogers

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Today sees the launch of the HTC One Mini on Canada's Rogers network. Starting today the One Mini can be yours for C$99.99 on a two-year plan, or C$399.99 on a month-to-month deal.

As the name suggests, the One Mini is a smaller version of the HTC One with cut-down internal hardware. It's got a 4.3-inch 720p display, a Snapdragon 400 CPU and 1GB of RAM, coupled with 16GB of internal storage. Around the back is the same "Ultrapixel" sensor found on the HTC One, only without optical image stabilization. Software-wise, it's HTC Sense 5 and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean running the show.

When we reviewed the international HTC One Mini over the summer we found it to be one of the best small form factor Android phones out there. For more details, check it out at the link below.

More: HTC One Mini review

Source: Rogers; via: MobileSyrup

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3 years ago

Gaze inside the torn-open Nexus 5

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The folks at iFixit are doing their thing again, this time with the Nexus 5. Not that most of us will ever venture down this road, but apparently much of the phone is easy to get to and swap out. Except for the front panel and display.

Source: iFixit

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3 years ago

HTC One Android 4.3 + Sense 5.5 update lands in the UK

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After a limited European rollout two weeks ago, UK devices are now getting the latest update

HTC UK has announced that HTC One devices in the UK should begin receiving their update to Android 4.3 and HTC Sense 5.5 from today. The update brings the HTC flagship up to software version 3.62.401.1, including updated video highlights and gallery app, new features in BlinkFeed (including the option to turn it off entirely) in addition to the newer version of Google's OS. The UK rollout follows a limited launch on some European devices a couple of weeks back.

What's next? Well, HTC's already hard at work getting Android 4.4 KitKat updates ready.

We've got the changelog for today's 4.3 update after the break.

Source: @HTC_UK

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3 years ago

Join us in 30 minutes for a live Nexus 5 Q&A Hangout!

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Apologies for the late notice, but we've decided to do a live Q&A Hangout so you can ask us anything and everything about the new Nexus 5.

Join us here — that's the link you'll need to ask questions. We'll get going at 4 p.m. EST — that's 1 p.m. on the west coast. 

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3 years ago

The Nexus 5 bumper case

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Here's our first look at the official Nexus 5 bumper case that's being sold by Google. Ours is in the currently unavailable "bright red" color, which to our aging eyes looks more like a DayGlo orange and should be appreciated by anyone who's ever had to do search-and-rescue on the high seas.

Anyhoo. We're not quite sure when a "case" became a "bumper case," because this guy covers everything save for the front of the phone. The case is more rigid than flexible, with the Nexus logo printed on the back. (We'll see how long that holds up.) Wireless charging still works with the case on the phone.

It's thin, but definitely makes the phone a wee bit larger. You've got cutouts for all the ports and nubs for all the buttons. The phone slips in easily enough, and it's not going anywhere once it's there. But it's also not hard to remove. 

What is difficult, however, is stomaching a $34.99 price on this thing. That's not cheap, at all.

We've got more pics and hands-on video after the break.

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3 years ago

Nexus 5 battery life first impressions: Good enough, but not great

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How does the Nexus 5's battery stand up after a few days of real-world use?

Battery life is one of those areas of smartphone performance that’s difficult to quantify. Synthetic tests rarely reflect real-world performance, and it takes time to get a feel for how a new phone stands up.

We’ve been using the Nexus 5 as our daily driver for the past few days — just about long enough to get a good idea of how the battery performs in regular day-to-day use. In a word — or two —  it’s good enough. Acceptable. OK, but not great. And certain tasks in particular seem to draw an inordinately large amount of juice from the phone’s 2300mAh reserves.

We’ll take a closer look after the break.

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3 years ago

Using the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear on Sprint

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Network improvements and S Pen refinement make both Sprint and the Note 3 worth a closer look

Sprint graciously sent us a shiny white Galaxy Note 3 and a Galaxy Gear to evaluate, and the way the dice roll they ended up in my hands for a week or so. The last experience I had of with any phone on Sprint left me a bit nervous, but hey — who isn't excited to get some time with a new Android and a fancy smart watch to go with it, right?

So I used them both full-time for a week, and have reached two conclusions that need to be shared.

  • Sprint is getting better. A lot better.
  • I don't like big phones that run crazy variants of Android, menu buttons make me twitchy, and SD cards are for cavemen. But I love the Note 3.

Yeah, I was as shocked as anyone who knows me is. But I'm happy, too. This is going to be as weird to write as it will be to read, so let's go.

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3 years ago

Switching launchers with Android 4.4's new 'Home' setting

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KitKat makes it easier to swap or uninstall custom launchers

Many of us enjoy using custom home screen launchers on our Android phones, but the process of switching between them has never been entirely foolproof. That's changed in the latest Android 4.4 KitKat, which introduces a new top-level menu in the Settings app allowing you to select your default launcher. That means you don't have to traipse into the Apps menu, find your custom launcher, then clear its defaults to change back. The new Home menu also gives you an easy way to uninstall custom launchers, by pressing the trash icon next to it.

Check out our video above for a quick walkthrough on the Nexus 5.

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