Headlines

2 years ago

PowerAMP 2.0 released, and they have a Twitter contest to go along with it

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

The folks at Max MP have released version 2.0 of PowerAmp, their excellent music player for Android.  We've loved PowerAmp in it's previous versions, and 2.0 looks to be a great update with improved media scanning,  Samsung Galaxy Nexus support, and SD card mounting fixes.  Add this to their list of great features, like tag editing, theme support, scrobbling, and that amazing graphical EQ and you have one of the best music players for mobile on any platform.  You can download the 15-day trial version of PowerAmp after the break, and the full version costs $4.99.  PowerAmp requires Android 2.1 or higher.

To help celebrate they also have a new Twitter account and a contest to give away 32GB microSD cards to store some music on.  The contest starts Friday Dec. 30 at noon Central time, and ends Jan.1 at midnight Central.  Follow @PowerAmp2 for the full details.

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2 years ago

Get an Android for Christmas? Need help with your Android? Here's where to start!

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So you found a new Android phone under your tree this year did you?  Welcome to the family, we're glad you're here, and you picked the right place to visit.  We understand all the options and choices can be a bit overwhelming if you're new to smartphones in general, or switching from another platform.  We have you covered, and here's a great set of resources to get you started.

  • Android forums: Most times the answers you want and need come from people just like you -- Android users.  You'll find out forums full of helpful and friendly people, who also know their stuff when it comes to Android devices. 
  • Help and Tips: When your new phone or tablet can do so much, sometimes it's hard to figure out the how and where.  These handy tips will get you pointed in the right direction so you can begin to make things you own.
  • Accessories: Looking for a case to protect your new phone?  Or maybe you want a spare battery or a new data cable?  We have you covered at the Android Central store. 
  • Applications: Android has about half a million apps, and sorting through them all is impossible.  We can help -- we look at more than a few and let you know about the ones we're particularly fond of.  Check it out!
  • And finally, our own forums adviser milominderbinder has the ultimate resource for any Android user in his Getting Started With Android post.  It's legendary, and we're darn lucky to have him around.  Be sure to have a read -- I promise you'll learn something. 
  • The Android Dictionary:  You're going to see a lot of terminology you may not understand, and we've got a great reference here for you.  Bookmark this one.

You're in for a treat with your new Android powered device, and you can always count on us to steer you right.  Settle in, and enjoy yourselves!

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2 years ago

Carphone Warehouse offering up Nexus S for £199.95

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The UK sale wagon continues to roll, with the Samsung Nexus S being offered up by Carphone Warehouse for a few pence under £200 SIM free. 

If you're anxious to get some pure Ice Cream Sandwich goodness but can't stretch to a Galaxy Nexus, at this price point the Nexus S is a bonafide bargain. Hit the source link for more information.

Source: Carphone Warehouse

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2 years ago

LG says Ice Cream Sandwich updates will start no earlier than April 2012, second push in Q3

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It's been about a month since LG first announced which of its phones would be getting Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. And it's going to be at least three more months or so before any of them actually see it.

LG on its Facebook page today announced that the Optimus LTE, Prada Phone by LG 3.0, Optimus 2X, Optimus Sol, myTouch Q and Eclipse would start to see ICS upgrades in the second quarter of 2012 -- that's as early as April, as late as June. And coming in the third quarter -- that's sometime between July and September -- the Optimus 3D, Optimus Black, Optimus Big, Optimus Q2 and Optimus EX will start to see their updates.

That LG has committed to updates is great. That it's going to take a minimum of six months for a number of its current phones to even begin to see official updates is far less great.

Source: Facebook

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2 years ago

What Android gifts did you receive this year?

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The gift-giving season is winding down to a close, and we're all enjoying the time with our loved ones, warm holiday comfort foods, and maybe some cool Android goodies.  Did you get a new Android phone?  Or a tablet?  Maybe you got a Google TV unit of some sort or another, or your stocking was full of accessories.  Sound off and share with us (we're like your extended Android family) to let everyone know what great stuff you got this year. 

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2 years ago

Want Face Unlock on your Nexus S? We've got it

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Because of the Samsung Nexus S' VGA front camera, face unlock was left out of the official and AOSP builds of last year's reference phone.  You know where this is going -- the files have been yanked out of the Galaxy Nexus and face unlock is working in all it's gimmicky goodness.  It's even working with a beard and glasses. 

It goes along great with a pair of AOSP builds and a few tweaks for the Nexus S twins, which are available as well.  This is why we love Android, open-source, and Nexus phones.  Ice Cream Sandwich is running better than most expected on year-old hardware, and we're having a blast playing with things.  We have the phones, we have the code, let's tear the roof off this mother.

Be sure to grab the right version for the right phone below.

Sprint only: AOSP 4.0.3 for the Nexus S 4G
AOSP 4.0.3 for the GSM Nexus S

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2 years ago

Dress up your Android for Christmas

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One of the best things about toting around an Android phone is the way you can make it yours.  Wallpapers, widgets, icon sets, even system apps can all be customized just about any darn way you please, and Christmas is a great time to do it! We dug around and found a few things you could use to get your Android phone into the Christmas spirit, check 'em out after the break.

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2 years ago

This is not the Samsung Galaxy S III

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Now you know how I hate to burst anyone's bubble, especially this close to Christmas. But -- oh, who am I kidding. I love to do that. Especially this close to Christmas.

This is not the Samsung Galaxy S III. It's not a leaked render. It is, however, a nicely done concept render, and it managed to fool a few people today, judging from the amount of tips in our inbox. But, no, folks, it's not the Samsung Galaxy S III, which has not been announced, has not been leaked, and is not seen in the picture above.

Repeat: That is not the Samsung Galaxy S III.

We all straight now? It's a fan render that was posted to some Russian "Samsung Phone Owners' Club" group, then reposted on a couple other sites and picked up before Concept-Phones published an update. Whoopsie. Again, not real. Move on.

Non-source: vkontakte.ru; non-via: concept-phones

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2 years ago

Samsung's Korean blog explains why the Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab didn't make the ICS cut

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And so begins the long list of Android devices that won't officially be updated to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Samsung's "Samsung Tomorrow" blog, in Korean, has explained why two of 2010's top devices, the Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab, won't be getting official updates to ICS. The short version: older hardware and a slew of customizations, including Samsung's own TouchWiz.

This shouldn't come as a surprise, folks, seeing as how Samsung just announced its initial round of ICS updates, and neither the Galaxy S nor the Galaxy Tab were on it. And neither device made our list of ICS update predictions, either. It sucks, but not every phone will receive and official update.

Your best bet will be the custom ROM route, and we guarantee you, you will see them.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow (translated)

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2 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR bugfix update rolling out now

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A fairly big update for the Motorola Droid RAZR has begun to roll out. Here's what's new in Software Version 6.11.748.XT912:

  • SIM error notification has been fixed
  • Improved camera features and quality
  • Improved stability of menu access, browser, phone dialer, video playback and music player to prevent force-close errors and lockups
  • Updated group message notification in e-mail
  • Improvement in 3G/4G data connectivity
  • Maintain network connection upon completion of a voice call
  • Background color has been adjusted to improve readability in Lapdock connection UI menu items.

You can get the update by going to Settings>About Phones>System Updates

Source: Verizon (pdf); Motorola
More: Droid RAZR forums

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2 years ago

C Spire gets the Motorola Milestone X2

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C Spire Wireless, the former Ceullar South that you're seeing in a smattering of TV commericials now, just announced availabilty of the Motorola Milestone X2. That's the same as the Motorola Droid X2 on Verizon that we reviewed back in the summer. Same 4.3-inch display, same 1GHz dual-core processor, same 8MP camera, no Droid branding. It's running Android 2.3 and has Swype on baord. C Spire's offering it up for $99 (after $50 rebate) on two-year contract.

Source: Press release; more: C Spire

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2 years ago

Sony Ericsson LT28at specs suggest 4.55-inch, 720p screen, 13MP camera, AT&T LTE

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We've seen leak after leak of the Sony Ericsson Nozomi (aka Xperia Arc HD) over the past couple of months, but now it seems we may have some early details of the device's American cousin, the as yet nameless LT28at. A Bluetooth SIG listing for the phone, spotted by XperiaBlog, suggests that it'll sport an impressive list of specifications. Apparently the LT28at will ship with a 4.55-inch 720p Sony Reality Display, a stonking 13 MP back-illuminated camera and LTE support, presumably on AT&T.

The Bluetooth listing doesn't mention AT&T by name, but Sony Ericsson has historically added the "at" suffix to its AT&T devices, so we think it's safe to assume this one will be headed to AT&T's LTE network rather than Verizon's. Equally, no CPU is listed, but given the way SE likes to streamline things across its product line, our money would be on the LT28at using a 1.5GHz dual-core chip, like the Nozomi.

However, the most unique thing about this phone is its purported camera setup -- 13MP is just insane for a smartphone camera. Sure, megapixels aren't everything, but SE has a great track record with its Exmor R sensors on devices like the Arc and the Ray. XperiaBlog managed to dig up a few example shots from the LT28at on Picasa (check the source link), and even after compression the pictures are pretty impressive.

Here's hoping we'll get to see more of the LT28at in the flesh at CES in just a few weeks time.

Source: Bluetooth SIG, XperiaBlog

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2 years ago

Largest newspaper publisher in the U.S. chooses iPhone over Android for newsrooms

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The largest newspaper publisher in the United States has decided on the mobile tech its reporters will carry -- and it's not good for Android. Gannett newspaper division president Bob Dickey, in an internal memo published by the independent Gannett Blog, announced that the company had purchased thousands of iPad 2s and iPhone 4Ss, which will reach newsrooms in January. 

What's that have to do with Android, you ask? When I left the employ (yes, voluntarily) of Gannett a little more than two years ago -- well, let's just say the sites I write for now were better equipped to cover news on the run back then than a honest-to-goodness "real" newsroom. In late 2010 or early 2011 (can't remember which), my former editor decided to get everyone who wanted one a Motorola Droid X. That was done at the local level though, on a pretty small scale. The purchase of thousands of iPads and iPhones on a national scale is a pretty big deal, and pretty disappointing to this newsroom survivor who makes his living off Android now.

On the other hand, just wait an hour or two and Android will have activated enough new devices to make up for Gannett's decision. OK. I feel better now.

Source: Gannett Blog

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2 years ago

Verizon on Galaxy Nexus signal strength: It's not us, it's you

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Update coming that will make signal appear to be better

It's not every day that smartphone users want to be lied to. But in the case of signal strength, we'll apparently make an exception. Verizon has told Computer World that in the case of the Verizon Galaxy Nexus, the LTE signal is being received and reported accurately. Too accurately, actually. So accurately, in fact, that if you appear to have a worse signal and more 3G/4G bouncing with the Galaxy Nexus, it's probably because your other LTE phones weren't as accuate as the Galaxy Nexus.

So, as Verizon told Computer World, it will make the Galaxy Nexus report signal strength a little less accurately as to ease our minds and be more in line with its other LTE devices. And so long as the phone at least appears to have a better connection, we're apparently OK with it.

This isn't an unprecedented move -- Apple did pretty much the same thing with the iPhone 4. While we're not disputing that things have appeared to be a bit off -- our own Verizon review unit definitely has appeared to be more wonky than our other 4G devices -- there's probably a little bit of the internet microscope at work here, too. Verizon (and every other carrier) is always working on improving connection, even after a phone is released. It's why we see new radios in updates all the time.

Anybody want to put money on what the next bug of the week is going to be?

Source: ComputerWorld
More: Verizon Galaxy Nexus forums

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2 years ago

Don't forget to download App Inventor projects before Dec. 31

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Google's App Inventor is dead, long live MIT's App Inventor!

A final notice everyone -- if you have some projects sitting around in App Inventor, and would like to keep them, either for some crazy time-capsule experiment or in the hopes of migrating them to MIT's App Inventor project, you've only got a handful of days left.  Come December 31, Google will be taking the whole kit and caboodle offline, and projects that haven't been downloaded are lost forever.

Getting them is easy, just log into appinventorbeta.com and hit the "Download All Projects" button as shown above.  Keep them safe, and when MIT gets things back up and running in 2012, you're ready to go.  For more information about MIT's implementation, have a look at their Learning Center.

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