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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Z + ZL Android 4.3 updates leak out

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First signs of newer Jelly Bean release for Xperia phones

Sony had previously promised Android 4.3 updates for some of its 2013 Xperia devices starting this month, and now a firmware package is available for those wanting to flash it onto the Xperia Z and ZL. The leaked updates are marked as "Commercial & Journalists" releases, meaning they're not necessarily intended for retail devices — but adventurous Xperia owners should be able to flash them onto any international LTE Xperia Z (C6603) or Xperia ZL (C6503) using the proper flash tool.

While it's possible this software build — version 10.4.B.0.569 — will be the same one to officially land via over-the-air updates before the end of the year, there's no guarantee this will be the case, and so caution is advised.

Sony's latest update advisory states that it plans to start updating the Xperia T, TX, V, Z, ZL, ZR, Tablet Z, SP, Z Ultra and Z1 from this month, though there's no sign of any Android 4.3-based firmware for other Sony devices just yet.

Source: XDA (Xperia Z), XDA (Xperia ZL); via: XperiaBlog

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3 years ago

Moto G's U.S. debut delayed by winter weather

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Delayed orders will be upgraded to overnight shipping, Motorola says

Those of us in the U.S. who ordered a Moto G (erm, some of us ordered more than one) on launch day have been awaiting shipping notices this week. Looks like we've got another week to go. 

Motorola this evening sent out e-mails announcing a delay because of the winter storm that struck much of the U.S., including Moto's fulfillment center in Fort Worth, Texas. That's caused a delay in shipping.

The good news? Moto's upgrading everyone to free overnight shipping by Dec. 17, if not sooner. We've seen at least one e-mail that says Dec. 14.

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3 years ago

Sony Z Ultra Google Play edition unboxing and hands-on

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The Sony Z Ultra loses the Xperia tag, but gains the 'Google experience'

A big phone or a small tablet? Neither? Both? It's the same Z Ultra we've seen before, with a little more Google in it. Big, bold, and waterproof, it's one we all were surprised to see when Google announced it

For fans of big phones — or small tablets with a phone on board — there is a lot to like here. As we saw with previous Google Play experience devices, you have Google's version of Android, with a few essential OEM customizations added on top. Additions like the X-Reality display software are great additions, and the combination makes for the best experience.

You've got everything Google as well. The Google applications we're used to seeing — minus the AOSP Gallery app, which has been fully replaced with Photos — including things like Google Earth and Google Currents are on board. The same goes for Google Wallet and the tap and pay function. The back of the Z Ultra says Sony, but you'll know you're holding a Google device in your hands.

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3 years ago

ASUS announces the Padfone Mini convertible phone + tablet

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4.3-inch mid-range phone turns into a 7-inch mid-range tablet

As widely anticipated, ASUS has today announced the latest addition to its Padfone line of convertible Android devices, the Padfone Mini. Like other Padfone products, the Padfone Mini comes in two parts — a 4.3-inch phone and a 7-inch tablet dock — meaning you can slot the former into the latter. This lets you use a single data plan for both tablet and phone mode, and charge the phone while it's docked in the tablet.

Unlike previous Padfones, the Padfone Mini is aimed squarely at the mid-range market. It's got a quad-core 1.4GHz Snapdragon 400 CPU with 1GB of RAM and a qHD (960x540) display on the phone, which expands to 1280x800 on the tablet. There's microSD expandability in addition to the 16GB of built-in storage, as well as a 1500mAh battery in the phone and a 2200mAh bank in the tablet. For your imaging needs there's an 8-megapixel camera with burst mode and ASUS' PixelMaster tech for boosting brightness in dark scenes.

And on the software side, the Padfone Mini runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and ASUS' own software customizations.

So the specs aren't earth-shattering, but given the price point of NT$11,990 ($405) that's not entirely surprising. The Padfone Mini is due to go on sale in China, Russia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Indonesia, according to Engdget, with no word on any Western release plans.

Source: Engadget

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3 years ago

Oppo N1 now available in U.S. and Europe

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$599 or €449 for oversized phone with rotating camera and CM support

As expected, the Oppo N1 has today gone on sale in the United States and Europe, where prices for the 16GB model start at $599 and €449 respectively — rising to $649 and €479 for the 32GB version. The latest high-end handset from the Chinese manufacturer, the N1 sports a 5.9-inch 1080p display, a rotating 13-megapixel camera for all your high-res selfie needs, and a 1.7GHz Snapdragon 600 processor with 2GB of RAM. Powering the phone is a capacious 3,610mAh battery.

Connectivity-wise, the N1 includes pentaband HSPA+ support up to 42Mbps as well as Bluetooth, NFC and Wifi Direct — though you'll be missing out on LTE support, putting the device at a significant disadvantage for Western buyers.

The Oppo N1 ships with the manufacturer's ColorOS software, based on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, but buyers will be easily switch to officially-supported CyanogenMod as an alternative OS — that's currently marked as "coming soon" on Oppo's site. (It's not to be confused with the limited run of "CM edition" N1s that run the community firmware out of the box.)

So it's fairly expensive and lacking in connectivity options compared to the competition, but there's no doubt that the N1 is a unique piece of technology. If you're picking one up today, shout out in the comments.

Source: Oppo Style

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3 years ago

Samsung hails 10 million Galaxy Note 3s sold after second month on sale

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Samsung's latest Note inducted into '10 million seller' club

Not long after the company announced it had shipped 5 million Galaxy Note 3s worldwide, Samsung has revealed that the device has now passed the 10 million sold mark. The milestone earns the Galaxy Note 3 in the "10 million club," Samsung says, alongside recent successes like the earlier Galaxy S and Galaxy Note phones, and popular clamshell phones from the last decade. 

It's unclear whether this means 10 million Note 3 devices are in the hands of end-users around the world, or whether Samsung has sold this number of handsets to retailers and carrier partners. Either way, that's a lot of Note 3s in a relatively short space of time. By comparison, the Galaxy Note 2 had shifted 5 million units shortly before the end of its second month on sale.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 also earned the title of "best oversized phone" in our recent roundup of the best Android phones on the market.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow

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3 years ago

Motorola holiday sale live for the last time [Update: sold out again!]

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Last chance to get an off-contract Moto X for $150 off the standard price

Update: Once again the Moto X has sold out at the promotional price in just under 10 minutes. Hit the comments and let us know if you were able to pick one up.

Original story: After Wednesday's sale sold out almost as quickly as it started, Motorola's giving customers one last chance to pick up a Moto X off-contract for $150 off the regular price. Hit up motorola.com/holiday2daysale to reserve your spot.

If you're successful you'll receive a code within a couple of hours, and you'll then have seven days to complete your customizations through Moto Maker, meaning you don't have to rush through the process. Good luck!

More: Motorola holiday sale

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3 years ago

T-Mobile's Samsung Galaxy Note 2 finally gets Android 4.3

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OK, folks. The long wait for T-Mobile's Samsung Galaxy Note 2 to get Android 4.3 has finally come to a close. It'll need a few minutes of your time — and about 614 megabytes of your storage — but it's finally here.

Doesn't look like TMo has updated its documentation just yet (look for it here), but folks in the forums are sussing it all out as we speak, so head on over there to see what's what.

More: T-Mobile Galaxy Note 2 forums
Thanks to Andrew for the pic, and everyone else who sent this in!

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3 years ago

LG G Flex preview

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It bends! It flexes! It regains its shape! And it's just the start of things to come for the Korean smartphone manufacturer.

It’s quite possible that we’ve been looking at this all wrong. But can you blame us? For LG, with its new G Flex Android smartphone, has presented us with something that not only is curved — and not just the glass that rests against our face, but the entire body of the phone — but bends and flexes as well.

By now, we’ve all seen the videos, of course. You can press down on the G Flex — and press pretty damn hard, actually, with up to 88 pounds of force. The phone itself is curved. It flattens out, then regains its shape.

What sorcery is this?

Thing is, it’s but one trick the LG G Flex has up its sleeve. And once you get past that novelty, the rest sort of starts to fall into place.

Let’s be clear here — this is not our LG G Flex review. We’ve only had it for a few short days, and this is the proper Korean model — Korean apps and TV antenna included. There’s no way we can get a proper feel for battery life, and we have no idea what the U.S. carriers will do to this thing when and if (ahem) they get it.

But this is quite the interesting phone.

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3 years ago

HTC and Verizon confirm Droid DNA Android 4.2.2 update

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600MB update already landing on devices

Both HTC and Verizon have confirmed that an update bringing Android 4.2.2 along with Sense 5 is on its way to Droid DNA owners today. It's certainly been a long time coming (as other HTC devices start to hit Android 4.4), but we'll never turn down such a huge update. While bringing all of the modern features of 4.2 and Sense 5, the DNA will now be up to speed software-wise with the HTC One on Verizon, which is important.

Members in our own forums are starting to see the updates on their own Droid DNAs, first in the form of a small update to prepare the system and again in a larger — about 600MB — update to make the jump to 4.2.2. Are you seeing the update on your own device? Sing out in the forums and let everyone else know how you're getting along with it.

More: Verizon Droid DNA forums

Source: Verizon; @moversi

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3 years ago

LG 'Optimus F3Q' QWERTY slider for T-Mobile leaked

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As evidenced by handsets like Verizon's LG Enact, U.S. carriers still believe there's a place in the smartphone market for devices with slide-out QWERTY keyboards. And if a newly-leaked render is to be believed, T-Mobile is another operator with at least one more QWERTY handset in its future. Prolific Twitter leaker @evleaks has today published images of the "LG Optimus F3Q," which he says is headed for the magenta carrier at some point.

There's no word on specs, pricing or release dates, but the name suggests it might be a keyboard-toting version of the Optimus F3, which arrived on Virgin Mobile over the summer. That device packs a dual-core 1.2GHz CPU, a 4-inch display and Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean.

Source: @evleaks

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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Z1 f heading to Japan on December 19

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Miniature Xperia Z1 scheduled for pre-holiday arrival on Docomo

We've known for a while that Sony's dinky Xperia Z1 f was due to arrive on NTT Docomo in Japan this month, but now we have a firm date — Thursday, Dec. 19. An update to the carrier's online store reveals that the pint-sized version of the Xperia Z1 will launch in black, white, lime and pink just in time for the holidays, though there's still no hint of any Western release.

The Xperia Z1 f packs similar internals to its larger counterpart, only with a smaller 4.3-inch display and slightly reduced battery capacity, making it a tempting proposition for those wanting a smaller Android phone that doesn't skimp on hardware muscle. Given Sony's traditional early-year release cycle, there's a good chance we might see an international version of the device — the rumored Z1 S perhaps — at the company's CES press conference in Las Vegas early next month.

Source: Docomo; via: XperiaBlog

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3 years ago

Samsung resumes international Galaxy S3 Android 4.3 updates

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New firmware being pushed out starting today in parts of Europe

The Android 4.3 firmware rollout for Samsung's Galaxy S3 didn't go exactly to plan, leading to the manufacturer suspending the rollout to investigate numerous issues reported by S3 owners. Now it appears Samsung has completed its work squishing bugs in the 4.3 firmware as a new update is being pushed out to international Galaxy S3 (GT-i9300) owners in parts of Europe.

According to reports from SamMobile and XDA, the new firmware carries the build number I9300XXUGMK6, and was built on Nov. 28. Early reports from forums suggest that the performance and stability issues affecting the earlier update have been fixed in the latest build. As before, the 4.3 update also brings Samsung's KNOX enterprise security platform, as well as support for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

As always, the OTA will likely take at least a few days to filter out to all users; if you've got a European Galaxy S3, hit the comments and let us know if you've got this latest update.

Source: SamMobile, XDA

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3 years ago

KitKat for US Cellular Moto X rolling out in phases

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Welcome to the KitKat club, US Cellular

If your Moto X is U.S. Cellular branded, you'll want to check for an update to the OS. Motorola's Punit Soni has announced that the KitKat update for USC models of the Moto X is currently rolling out in stages,

When finished, don't expect things to look very different. Under the hood though, well that's another story. Changes to resource management will keep your Moto X running snappy even while more apps are open and running, and as new applications are written that take advantage of 4.4 features, you'll be ready for them.

Anyone on USC seeing this yet? Shout out in the comments!

Source: +Punit Soni

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3 years ago

Moto X holiday sale now live [Update: sold out!]

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Moto X $150-off promotion sells out almost immediately

Update, 12:10pm ET: That's it. Motorola is out of codes for today. The next chance to buy a Moto X at the promotional price is 12 noon ET next Monday.

Original story: As promised, Motorola has opened up its Moto X holiday sale, following the ill-fated Cyber Monday promotion that saw many customers unable to place orders. To make up for this, Moto X buyers in the U.S. can head over to motorola.com/holiday2daysale now and get a coupon code to claim a $150 discount code for a customized Moto X through Moto Maker. (Developer editions are excluded from this promotion.)

As outlined by the manufacturer yesterday, you'll receive your code within a couple of hours, and you'll then have seven days to complete your customizations, meaning you don't have to rush through the process.

If you're trying to get your hands on a discounted Moto X today, hit the comments and let us know how you get on. There'll be another chance to bag an off-contract Moto X at a reduced price next Monday, Dec. 9.

More: Motorola Holiday Sale

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