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3 years ago

Android 5.0 Jellybean in 2012? Better optimized for tablets? You don't say ...

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ZOMG A STORY ABOUT JELLY BEAN! But here's the thing. It's out of our favorite (not really) Taiwanese manufacturer rag, Digitimes. It's also as obvious as it is ridiculous. Here's the gist:

Android 5.0 Jelly Bean (neither the number nor the nickname is official, remember) is said to:

  • Launch in the second quarter. We dunno about "launch," but, yeah. Google IO is June 27-29. June is in the second quarter. And it's more than likely we'll get details on the next version of Android there. But "launch"? Nah.
  • Further optimized for tablets. We certainly hope otherwise, what's the point? Jelly Bean (or whatever it's called) probably will be further optimized for smartphones, too. Maybe even Google TV. Now will the UI undergo some major reconstruction for tablets? That's entirely possible, and it's not a bad idea at all. 
  • Integrating Chrome for "dual-operating system designs": Uh, OK. The idea, apparently, is to offer manufacturers the option of having an Android/Windows 8 system, without having to shut down. Hey, why not. BlackBerry's already doing that with its PlayBook tablet. But somehow we don't think adding a full second operating system and ecosystem is going to make choosing a tablet any simpler for consumers.
  • Google looking to get back into the netbook/notebook market with Jelly Bean: Sure. Why not. Android netbooks aren't new -- you'll recall our look at the HP Compaq Airlife 100 at Mobile World Congress in 2010. And you have the likes of ASUS' excellent Transformer line of tablet/notebook hybrids. Question is, should this have any legs to is, what happens with Chromebooks?

So, yeah. Really not a whole lot of meat there. A little patience, folks. We've got a good feeling that Google's got something up its sleeves for 2012.

Source: Digitimes

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3 years ago

Android Central weekly photo contest: Animals

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It's time for another weekly photo contest, and this week the theme is animals.  It's a broad category, and we can't wait to see how some of you guys and gals dazzle us with your great pictures.  Whether it's a picture of your pet, something from the park or zoo, or something exotic, we wanna see those pics.  This week the winner gets a headset of his or her choice from ShopAndroid.com to keep the noise down while shooting those elusive wildlife shots.  

Rules are easy -- you'll need to use an Android device to take the picture, and be sure to let us know which one in case your photo is selected as a finalist.  Also tell us who you are so we can give proper credit.  Only submit one picture per person, and e-mail your entry to pics@androidcentral.com by Friday Feb 17.  We'll pick the best of the bunch, and announce the winners on the blog Sunday, Feb 19.  Good luck all, and we can't wait to see this weeks pictures!

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3 years ago

White Galaxy Nexus begins shipping in the UK today

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As we learned last week, the white version of Samsung's Galaxy Nexus is due to go on sale today across multiple retailers. The white Nexus, which first emerged around a month ago, retains the black bezel around the screen, instead opting to change the color of the side trim and back cover.

Besides that, it's still a Galaxy Nexus -- same 1.2 GHz dual-core CPU, 1GB of RAM and gorgeous 720p HD SuperAMOLED display. You'll also get to be one of the cool kids with the current Google Experience phone, giving you Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich along with timely updates straight from Mountain View. And if you're buying in the UK, you can expect the same £500 SIM-free price point. As far as we're aware, no British or European carriers are offering the white Nexus at subsidized prices right out of the door.

And we still haven't heard anything about a US launch for the white Galaxy Nexus, though you should be able to import the GSM version form the usual places, just like the original "titanium silver" version. We're hoping Sprint may surprise us with a white Galaxy Nexus model when it launches its LTE version later in the year.

More: Samsung Galaxy Nexus review

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3 years ago

Android Central weekly photo contest winners: Lloyd was here

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It's Sunday, which means it's time to announce the weekly photo contest winners!  This time around we asked you guys to take Lloyd along with you and snap a picture showing what kind of good times you all had together, and as usual the response was overwhelming.  We dug through all the entries, and picked the five best.  Winners will receive an Android Central t-shirt, and all the prestige that comes along with.  Winners, check your Inbox for more info.

You can find all five winning photos after the break (in no particular order), and stay tuned for the next contest coming Monday!

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3 years ago

HTC Endeavor RUU has treasure trove of Sense 4.0 screen shots

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Gotta love a good RUU -- otherwise known as a ROM Update Utility -- because they're chock full of fun stuff. And the one that surfaced over the weekend for the HTC Endeavor has found itself available for download. We've been picking it apart and have packaged up a nice little Sense 4.0 preview.

And that' sbeen the big question since Google announced Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich -- what will HTC (and the other manufacturers) do with their custom user interfaces. ICS easily is the sexiest "stock" UI Google's come up with (by far). How will HTC and Motorola and Samsung and everyone else customize it? We've gotten a glimpse of what HTC likely has in store for us in that leaked video of the HTC Ville, and now we're getting an even better look thanks to the RUU. Packaged within it are nearly two dozen screen shots that show a Sense that looks familiar, yet refined.

Looks like we've got a bunch of different lock screen options, with the ring and quick links that we've come to know and love so much, and the Sense dock has more of the traditional Android look and feel that we've come to know. How that all works together, we're not quire sure. It's almost some sort of hybrid, with HTC's widgets throughout. Or perhaps what we're seeing is just a massive serires of themes. 

(Update: Now that I think about it some more, maybe toss out that whole "hybrid" thing. What you see after the break may well just be example images of what you see in Sense 4.0.)

You get a good look at the Sense phone book, favorite contacts, photo gallery, lock screen reminders and stocks backgrounds -- in both portrait and landscape. And it also looks like Beats and NFC are a go, too, from what we've seen in the ROM.

We've got a plethora of screen shots after the break. Peep 'em.

We've got some wallpapers from the leaked RUU available in the Android Central forums, too!

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3 years ago

Apple at it again, calling for injunction against the Galaxy Nexus

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Apple has once again called Samsung into court. This time it's about the Galaxy Nexus and four patents that Apple says it infringes. The patents in question are:

Apple is requesting that the Samsung Galaxy Nexus be blocked from sale in the United States because it violates these patents.  Should the court find in favor of Apple, a ban against the Galaxy Nexus would be put in effect until the final court decision.  

Could it happen? Certainly. But if it does, it won't go into effect any time soon, it would only affect stores inside the U.S. selling these products, and no jack-booted thugs from Cupertino will come pry your Nexus from your hands. We can't be sure how the courts will act, but all of these are pretty shaky patents, and once again Apple is not going after Google directly -- even though the Galaxy Nexus has a pure vanilla version of Android.  The only certainty here is that the patent system is broken and only serves the company willing to spend the most in the courts.

It's time for Google to step in and put a stop to this bullshit. The first patent in question is the same one that was upheld against HTC in a move that shocked the tech community at large, essentially giving Apple the rights to the hyperlink -- something invented over 20 years ago by numerous companies that aren't Apple.

The other three are just as laughable, or would be if not for the fact that Apple was allowed to secure the patents at all. Every single one of them has existed as prior art long before Apple became relevant, yet a patent was granted each and every time. This is the core of the problem. You can't blame Apple for trying, it's cheaper to litigate away your competition than it is to out-innovate them.  And make no mistake -- that's exactly what's going on here.  Apple wants Android to go away, and a look at any chart that shows market share will tell you why.  It's a shitty way to get ahead, but it's too easy not to try. It's going to take a tech giant to change the way this all works, and we know nobody can count on Apple or Microsoft to do it, because this is their system, created the way they like it, and making them rich. If Apple is afraid to go after Google, Google needs to go after Apple instead of sitting on their laurels waiting to ride in and save the day at the last minute.

Now blast away in the comments, telling me how subsection F of title code XXIVI (or some other ridiculous lawyer speak) makes my points invalid. In reality, they make it even more valid -- spending money on lawyers, and twisting common sense into something that kills your competition works with the current patent system. That makes us sad.

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3 years ago

Droid 4 root method now available

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We only got the Motorola Droid 4 officially a day ago, but today we see the release of a root exploit for the device, courtesy of security researcher Dan Rosenberg. 

That's good news for you guys out there that have thought about picking up a Droid 4 and have to have root access. And as our image here shows, all works, and works well. 

The method is Windows-only for now, but it's simple enough. Download a .zip file, put your Droid 4 into USB debugging mode, and run the exploit file. Takes just a couple minutes and a couple reboots.

Download: Vulnfactory.org
More: Droid 4 forums

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3 years ago

'HTC Endeavor' quad-core phone reportedly on the way

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HTC may be about to make smartphone history with the world's first quad-core handset, if the latest reports from veteran phone blog MoDaCo are to be believed.   According to MoDaCo's source, the manufacturer will soon unveil the HTC Endeavor, and it'll be powered by a beastly quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor. Other reported specs include 1GB of RAM, a 4.7-inch, 720p display, an 8MP main camera and 1.3MP front-facer.  Connectivity-wise, Wifi a/b/g/n support is reported, along with Bluetooth 4.0. A quad-band (not penta-band) HSPA+ radio is apparently in the bag too, which suggests this device may be AT&T-bound in the US.   On the software side, the phone is said to run Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and HTC Sense 4.0, just like the couple of leaked devices we’ve already seen.   The Endeavor, which seems to have started life with the codename “Edge”, has been the subject of numerous leaks since late last year. Recent reports have suggested that “Endeavor” is actually a codename, and that the device will be branded as the HTC Supreme. Given the differences in the spelling of “Endeavor” (or Endeavour, if you prefer) around the world, our money would be on “Supreme” being the final name.   It’s likely we’ll see more of HTC’s quad-core monster in a couple of weeks at MWC. We’ll be there, of course, to bring you all the announcements as they happen!

Source: MoDaCo

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3 years ago

Late-night poll: How big is too big?

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4-inches, 4.65-inches, 5.3-inches, when will it all end?  When we decide they are too big and stop buying them, that's when.  When the HTC EVO 4G came out at 4.3-inches, people wanted more.  The Galaxy Nexus checked in at 4.65, people are wanting more.  Now we have the Galaxy Note at 5.3, and the rumored LG Optimus Vu at 5-inches but with a 4:3 aspect ratio.  Those are big phones.  Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to the size of their phone, but there is a market sweet spot that will eventually be found.  We figured we could do some market research of our own and predict a little bit of the future, so let us know in the poll about how big your ideal phone would be.

 

I want a phone that's:

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3 years ago

Bell Samsung Galaxy Nexus receiving Android 4.0.2 OTA update

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The interesting saga of Samsung Galaxy Nexus OTA's has now spread to Canada. Users of Bell Mobility in the Great White North are now reporting Android 4.0.2 is now setting off update notifications on their devices. This version is still a bit behind as some have since moved on to Android 4.0.3 but if nothing else it's interesting how the updates have been rolling out. If you're on Bell and have a Samsung Galaxy Nexus go ahead and check for updates.

Thanks, Mario!

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3 years ago

LG Optimus Vu picture surfaces, holds hands with Galaxy Note

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The LG Optimus Vu has appeared in a picture next to the Samsung Galaxy Note, giving us all a great side by side look at the next phablet to hit the pipeline.  As we can see from the picture, the Vu's overall size is pretty close to the Note, meaning both are big, bold, and in your face.  The 5.3-inch Note is slightly taller than the Vu, but the latter's 4:3 aspect ratio makes it the wider of the two.  The unofficial specs are said to be a 1024x768 display, a dual-core Qualcomm WPQ8060 processor running at 1.5GHz, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of ROM, and an 8-megapixel camera.

We still don't know much more about this one, but now that it's showing off for the camera we expect we will see it at Mobile World Congress in a week or so.  The real question remains -- is the world ready for a phone this big, or are we entering the tablet space once we go past ginormous on the size chart?

Source: HelloAdam100 blog; via UnwiredView

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3 years ago

Acer said to be bringing CloudMobile smartphone with Ice Cream Sandwich to Mobile World Congress

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Back during CES 2012 Acer showed off something called Acercloud, a new service from them much like Apple's iCloud services in the fact it will keep documents and media libraries in the cloud with sync being offered across their line of smartphones and tablets.

Jumping forward to the present, Acer apparently just won the iF Product Design Award for outstanding achievement in design with a AcerCloud enabled device called the Acer CloudMobile but the full details and specs surrounding the device are still pretty slim.

What we did learn though is that the Acer CloudMobile will be the first device coming equipped with AcerCloud services, it will be packing Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich in a body less then 10MM thick with a 4.3-Inch HD display and Dolby audio and to top it all off, it's expected to see a full unveiling at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. We'll see.

Source: Pocket Lint, iF Product Design

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3 years ago

Galaxy Mini 2 appears, offers modest improvements at low-end

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As well as expanding its mid-range portfolio with the Galaxy S Advance, it looks like Samsung is preparing a refresh of its entry-level hardware. A couple of promotional shots for a device dubbed the "Galaxy Mini 2" have leaked out online, showing some modest improvements on the basic hardware of last year's Galaxy Mini.

The most significant change is the upping of the screen's resolution -- from QVGA to HVGA. This was one of our biggest complaints about that device, so we're hoping the extra pixel density will result in a little less eye strain when using the Mini 2. For what it's worth, the LCD itself is a little larger, at 3.3 inches compared to 3.2 on the original.

As we said, spec bumps elsewhere are pretty minor -- the CPU gets a boost from 600MHz to 800MHz, while internal storage is increased to a total of 3GB. HSDPA speeds remain at 7.2Mbps, though unfortunately there's no mention of HSUPA support. And on the software side of you've got Android 2.3 Gingerbread, likely backed up by Samsung's TouchWiz UX.

Though the gap between super-high-end and entry-level phones is growing wider, the updated specs on the Galaxy Mini 2 should make it a a reasonable device for those on a budget. According to today's leak, the Galaxy Mini 2 will start shipping internationally later this month.

Source: GSMArena

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3 years ago

'Berry pink' Galaxy Note reportedly coming by early March

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Want to feel even more awkward and self-conscious making calls on your Galaxy Note in public? Why not pick up the upcoming "berry pink" version of Samsung's 5.3-inch monster. It's reportedly launching internationally during the ninth week of the year -- that's last week of February (or "crazy week" as we like to call it around here).

The leaked promotional shot, obtained by GSMArena, reminds us of the pink Galaxy S II. Like that device, the pink Galaxy Note comes with a pink back cover, a pink bezel, and presumably a pink S Pen to boot. And we're talking bright pink. Discrete this thing most certainly is not.

In any case, it's worth remembering that this pink version is based on the GT-N7000 -- the international Galaxy Note, which has different internals to the North American LTE version. Somehow we don't see this color arriving stateside any time soon, but if you're up for importing it, then the girliest phone ever should set you back around $790.

Source: GSMArena

 

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3 years ago

Unannounced HTC device emerges sporting ICS, Verizon 4G LTE

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Following last week's HTC Ville leakage, a new, unannounced HTC smartphone running Ice Cream Sandwich with Sense 4.0, and a Droid Incredible-style back panel has appeared online. The photos above (and a few more) have surfaced over on PhoneArena, suggesting that a 4G LTE-powered Droid Incredible 2 successor could be coming to big red in the future. While there's no Verizon branding on the chassis (likely due to this being a prototype), that's unmistakably the carrier's 4G LTE logo in the first image.

Additional images show a device running Android 4.0.1 Ice Cream Sandwich alongside HTC Sense 4.0 -- the same updated Sense experience that we previously seen in the Ville leaks. Hardware-wise, HTC's mystery slab is powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU with 1GB of RAM. There's a 8MP shooter on the back, as well as a VGA front-facer, and the screen is apparently an AMOLED offering rather than SLCD, which was used in many 2011 HTC products.

All in all, it looks like we've got ourselves a CDMA/LTE counterpart to the HTC Ville, which we'll likely see at MWC in a couple of weeks. We're not expecting to see any Verizon-specific stuff in Spain, but if we had to guess, we'd say this thing is a likely candidate for an unveiling at CTIA next month. You'll find more pics over at the source link.

Source: PhoneArena

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