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3 years ago

'Google Edition' Sony Xperia Z coming soon


Sony Mobile will partner with Google to release a ‘Nexus user experience’ version of its flagship Xperia Z phone, Android Central can confirm

First came the Samsung Galaxy S4 "Google Edition." Then last week brought news of the HTC One "with Nexus user experience." In the past couple of days, rumors have been circulating that Sony will join the "Google Edition" club and release a vanilla Android phone of its own, with Romanian site AndroidGeeks breaking the story. Today we can confirm through our own sources that the Japanese manufacturer is indeed preparing a "Google Edition" of its flagship Xperia Z handset.

The "Google Edition" Sony Xperia Z should be sold in the U.S. through the Google Play Store later in the year, just like the two other Google Edition handsets. Being a "Nexus user experience" phone it’s very likely this new Xperia Z will benefit from speedier system updates, though we weren’t able to specifically confirm this point. (Nor could we nail down any details on possible international availability -- though we’re not holding our breath.)

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3 years ago

Sprint announces budget-minded LG Optimus F3 for just $29 on-contract


The first phone to have Google TalkBack speech-to-text enabled out of the box

Sprint announced today that a new budget offering, the LG Optimus F3, will be coming to the network starting next week for $29.99 on-contract. Just as we expected based on previous leaks, this low-end device is hitting the Now Network as an option for those looking to start up a new line on the cheap. The Optimus F3 has a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 4-inch 480x800 IPS display, LTE networking, a large 2460mAh battery and Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean. Just as we've seen with a few of LG's recent low-end devices, it will come loaded with a few of LG's premium software features such as VuTalk, QSlide and QMemo.

The Optimus F3 is also the first phone to come pre-loaded and pre-enabled with Google TalkBack, a service that provides speech-to-text functionality for visually impaired users. The device will be configured and ready to offer the service from the first time it is powered on, removing an important barrier that would otherwise keep those with visual impairments from starting to use the device. The Optimus F3 hits Sprint on June 14th for $29.99 on-contract after a $50 mail-in rebate offer.

Source: Sprint

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3 years ago

International Samsung Galaxy S4 updated with apps-to-SD support, visual changes


International LTE Galaxy S4s get first major software update, starting with unlocked German devices

The international LTE version of the Samsung Galaxy S4 (GT-i9505) has started receiving its first substantial software upgrade today, with unlocked devices in Germany being among the first to get it. The update to version I9505XXUBMEA incorporates a number of visual changes, including a new, partially-transparent notification bar, new settings icons, and fix for ghosting issues in certain areas of the UI.

But the biggest addition for S4 owners might be reintroduction of apps-to-SD card support. First added in Android 2.2 Froyo and removed in the most recent 4.2 Jelly Bean, the ability to move apps to the SD card was originally a way to work around the anemic internal storage of older Android phones. The S4, of course, has been criticized for the fact that its 16GB version ships with only 9GB or so of available space. So the reintroduction of apps-to-SD might alleviate some of these storage issues, but you'll still be relying on app developers to enable apps-to-SD before you're able to use it.

(Update: We're also noticing significantly improved responsiveness and less animation lag in this new S4 firmware.)

German users with unlocked S4s should be able to pick up the update over-the-air or through Kies, and other regions should follow in the weeks ahead. (Of course, if you're feeling adventurous, you could always flash the German firmware directly.)

Source: SamMobile

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3 years ago

The official Samsung Galaxy S4 wireless charging kit



Official accessory brings Qi wireless charging to the Galaxy S4, at the cost of a little extra girth

Wireless charging is one of those features that seems like an unimportant luxury until you've used it for yourself. The ability to place your phone down on a magical pad and have it charge through the ether can change the way you use your device. Suddenly, you're free from wires and don't having to worry about constant plugging and unplugging. It's an added convenience if you're sat working at a desk all day, or even if you want to charge your phone on a nightstand without getting tangled in wires.

The Samsung Galaxy S4 doesn't include wireless charging capabilities out of the box, but the official S Charger kit brings Qi-standard inductive charging to the device, in the form of a replacement back cover and charging plate. In exchange for a little extra thickness on the phone, this lets you take advantage of wireless charging on your S4. And it's available now from priced $89.95, 10 percent off the list price.

So let's take a closer look -- we've got video, photos and more words after the break!

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3 years ago

HTC One heading to T-Mobile stores nationwide today


It should be a little easier to pick up the T-Mobile HTC One from today

A quick heads-up for T-Mobile U.S. customers -- the HTC One is due to launch in T-Mo stores nationwide today, following a limited roll-out in some 300 stores last month. The wider roll-out coincides with reports that HTC has overcome the early component supply issues that dogged the HTC One launch.

T-Mobile's HTC One can be yours with a $99.99 down payment on a 24-month installment plan, or alternatively it'll cost you $579.99 if you're buying outright. For more on the HTC One, check out our comprehensive review.

More: HTC One review

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3 years ago

HTC 'M4' allegedly captured, looks to be an HTC One mini


Smaller chassis and screen shown on a phone with a familiar design

It's been a while since we've heard anything about the M4, the rumored mid-range variant of the the flagship HTC One handset. Today the device seems to have cropped up on Estonian site, in a number of images of varying quality.  The shots seem to confirm what's been rumored about the M4, specifically that it's a smaller version of the HTC One without the aluminum unibody. (Close-ups of the phone seem to show a much more plasticky-looking exterior.)

The site also claims to have a partial spec list for the M4, and lists a dual-core CPU, 2GB of RAM, a 4.3-inch 720p display, 16GB of storage and a 4MP HTC Ultrapixel camera. Software-wise, Android 4.2.2 is reported, and shots of the screen unsurprisingly show HTC's Sense 5 software in action. What's more, images of the phone's front face seem to confirm the presence of a pair of "BoomSound" front-facing speakers. An August launch at a €400 price point is also speculated.

If this is all legit, it looks like HTC will be pitting the M4 against the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini in the mid-to-high-end space. And assuming the specs are accurate, a 720p display would give the HTC device a clear edge over the qHD SuperAMOLED used in Samsung's Mini.

Source:; via: Engadget

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3 years ago

Huawei and Carphone Warehouse announce Ascend Y300


Entry-lev​el handset can be had for as little as £59.95

Phone-maker Huawei and British retailer Carphone Warehouse have announced the UK launch of an entry-level Android handset, the Ascend Y300. Powered by a dual-core 1GHz processor with a 4-inch WVGA (480x800) display, a 5-megapixel camera and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the Ascend Y300 doesn't offer outstanding specs -- although you are getting a relatively up-to-date version of Android.

But it's the price that's intended to turn heads, as Carphone Warehouse will sell the Y300 for as little as £59.95 on pre-pay. To qualify for this price, you'll need to be upgrading on a pre-paid plan; alternatively it's £69.95 for new PAYG customers, or free on contracts starting at £7.50 per month.

The Huawei Ascend Y300 will launch at Carphone Warehouse from tomorrow, Thursday June 6. Any takers?

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3 years ago

Samsung announces water-resistant Galaxy S4 Active


Ruggedized GS4 launching this summer, coming to the U.S. and Sweden first

After weeks of leaks, Samsung has officially announced the Galaxy S4 Active -- a ruggedized, water and dust-resistant version of its flagship smartphone. The Galaxy S4 Active shares much of its internal hardware with the vanilla Galaxy S4, including a quad-core Snapdragon 600 CPU at 1.9GHz, 2GB of RAM, a 1080p (TFT, not AMOLED) display, 2600mAh battery and 16GB of internal storage, expandable via microSD. The camera's taken a minor hit, going from 13MP on the regular GS4 to 8MP on the Active.

The main difference is the "fully sealed design" that the manufacturer's boasting is certified IP67 water and dust resistant . That means the external chassis looks a lot more durable, and the capacitive keys have been replaced with three physical, clicky buttons.

On the software side, we're still looking at Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and the latest Samsung TouchWiz UI, including headline Galaxy S4 features like WatchON, the Peel-based TV controller app, which uses a front-mounted IR blaster. S Health is on-board too, along with the full suite of Samsung apps and camera capabilities like 'drama shot' and 'sound and shot.' There's also a new 'aqua shot' mode for taking underwater pics.

You get the idea -- it's essentially a Galaxy S4 in a re-worked, sturdier chassis. Samsung says the Galaxy S4 Active will have a global release this summer, with the U.S. and Sweden seeing release first. In the UK, retailer Phones4U has confirmed that it'll offer the Active "when it becomes available." There's no word of which U.S. carriers will launch the device just yet, we've seen leaked images of the Active with AT&T branding in recent days. Samsung adds that the device will be at its "Premiere 2013" show in London on June 20, and we'll be live from that event to bring you hands-on coverage.

We've got more photos after the break.

Source: Samsung

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3 years ago

Your old phone could be worth up to $300 off the purchase of any Samsung phone at Radio Shack


If you're considering picking up a new Samsung phone, Radio Shack wants to talk to you -- and they have money to spend on your trade-in

From now until July 7 Radio Shack is offering a trade-in program on purchases of any Samsung phone from Verizon, AT&T or Sprint. Your old phone is guaranteed to get you at least $30, with several phones like the iPhone 5 or the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 netting you as much as $300 in like new condition. The phone you're trading in has to be working, and you'll get more money by including the cables and charger. For more information, have a look here.

This is how you move product folks. Get people interested with special promotions like this one with Radio Shack, then keep them interested once they see the great products you've made. It's no wonder Samsung is making all the money off of Android, because they have the best business plan. Other vendors should take note if they want to compete with the Samsung juggernaut. 

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3 years ago

Plague Inc. Mutation 1.6 infects Android in August


Plague Inc. -- a longstanding favorite here at Android Central -- will be bringing its latest "mutation" to Android come August. The update for the strategy game, in which your goal is to kill every last man, woman and child on earth, adds options for speed runs, official content from the Centers for Disease Control, translations for Korean, Japanese, Chinese and Russian, and a few other in-game enhancements. 

The update will be free when it lands in Google Play. (It'll hit the iOS version of the game first.)

We've got the full rundown after the break.

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3 years ago

White Nexus 4s apparently being intercepted, returned to Google [Updated]


Update: Google Play support tells us that white Nexus 4 buyers should disregard the "intercepted" message, and that delivery times should be unaffected by the error. We've got the full statement after the break.

Original story: Those of us waiting on our white Nexus 4s to be delivered today apparently are going to have to wait a little longer. On Monday, the UPS shipping status was updated to "The shipper has requested a Delivery Intercept for this package. / Return to sender pending."

And this morning, we're now showing "The Delivery Intercept request for this package was successfully completed. / Shipper requested return of package."

LG announced the white version on May 28, and it went on sale in Google Play in the U.S. a day later. The 16-gigabyte version is currently listed as being out of stock, while the 8GB model is still for sale.

A quick call into the Google Play support line tells us that they're aware of the "intercepted" updates, but we don't have much more to go on than that. We've got e-mails into Google to see what's going on, and when the white Nexus 4 may ship again, or be delivered again, or whatever. Stay tuned.

More: Nexus 4 forums

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3 years ago

Sony announces entry-level Xperia M


Jelly Bean on a 4-inch FWVGA screen, with a dual-core CPU and dual SIM option

Sony Mobile has added to its 2013 stable with a new entry-level offering, the Xperia M. Sharing many design traits with earlier Xperias, including the Xperia Z's trademark rounded power button and the Xperia T's chassis trim, the Xperia M is unmistakably a Sony phone.

The device has a 4-inch FWVGA (480x854) display on the front, along with on-screen buttons. Around the back there's a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera.

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3 years ago

Lenovo's Intel-powered K900 smartphone hits a couple new countries


Lenovo and Intel today announced that the K900 -- one of the few Android smartphones we've seen this year with an Intel processor -- is now available in Thailand and Malaysia. China picked it up a few weeks ago.

We got our first look at the K900 at Mobile World Congress in Spain in February, and this thing is quite the beast.

Eight more countries will get the K900 later this summer, Lenovo says.

Source: Press release

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3 years ago

Verizon finally announces it'll carry the HTC One


'Later this summer' is all we've got to go by for now

In what really shouldn't be all that much of a surprise, Verizon has finally acknowledged that it will carry the HTC One at some point this summer. No word yet on how much it'll cost (figure flagship-level pricing), when, exactly you can get it ("later this summer" is as official as we've got) or what sort of tweaks Verizon could have had one. (Red, perhaps? We're not holding our breath, but this thing would be bad-ass in black with red accents.)

The HTC One marks the manufacturer's major release for 2013, with nearly identical versions on the other three U.S. carriers having been released for about a month now.

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3 years ago

Huawei Ascend P2 now available on Three UK


Free from £23 per month, or £299.99 on Pay As You Go

Three UK sends word that it's launched Huawei's latest mid-to-high-end handset, the Ascend P2. The data-centric operator is selling the Ascend P2 on-contract starting at £23 per month. That gets you unlimited data, 500 minutes and 5,000 texts on a 24-month plan. Alternatively, Three's also selling the P2 on Pay As You Go for £299.99 plus a PAYG top-up.

That money -- or monthly commitment -- will get you a reasonably speedy handset, powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core CPU, with a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 4.7-inch 720p display. On the connectivity side, the P2 supports Three's current 42Mbps DC-HSDPA, as well as 4G LTE, due to be rolled out by the operator later in the year.

The Huawei Ascend P2 is available now from Three's online store, and will be launching in brick-and-mortar Three outlets from tomorrow.

More: Three UK

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