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3 years ago

From the mail bag: Activating device administrator for an app

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Apps that can alter the default security policy can be powerful and handy, but you need to know why they are doing it before you say OK.

Carolyn writes,

I purchased the Unlock with WiFi app that Jerry recommended a few weeks ago. I haven't fully installed it to use yet because it asked to "activate device administrator". I wanted to be sure that was OK? What risks does it create to allow this type of access to my phone?

Thanks!

What an excellent question! Security on any smartphone is pretty darn important, and the simple fact is that most of the time when it gets compromised, it's because of something we did. I don't mean something crazy like installing cracked apps from a website you had to use Google Translate to read, though that's always a good way to compromise everything. I'm talking about changing device settings or just not using some functions because we don't fully understand them. The Device Administration API is a great example.

Originally baked into Android with version 2.2, the Device Admin API allows you to alter the remote or local security policy of your Android. We'll use my Unlock with Wifi app as a walkthrough of what that means after the break.

Have a question you need answered? (Preferably about Android, but we're flexible.) Hit up our Contact Page to get in touch!

More information about the Device Admin API

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3 years ago

Newer Android 4.3 build leaks for the Google Play Galaxy S4

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Build JWR66V leaks out, and there's already a flashable zip for some TouchWiz GS4s

We're still a few days out from the event we presume will host the launch of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, but in the meantime we're seeing yet another leaked built of the upcoming OS. The second leaked build for the Google Play edition Samsung Galaxy S4 was built on July 8 and comes with an accompanying kernel built July 11.

It originally popped up on the XDA forums as an ODIN-flashable image for the Google Play GS4 (GT-i9505G), however it's now been repackaged into a flashable ROM for the European variant (GT-i9505) and certain U.S. and Canadian GSM GS4s. That means many users with TouchWiz Galaxy S4s can now try out Android 4.3 on their devices.

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3 years ago

Moto X. August 1. New York.

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So that settles it. Moto's next big thing is set to be unveiled in New York City at the start of next month. Look closely in the bottom right corner and you'll even see the device modeled by Eric Schmidt late last week.

Needless to say, we'll be live from NYC on Aug. 1 to bring you full coverage of the Moto X launch.

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3 years ago

Galaxy Note 2 to skip Android 4.2, go straight to 'newer version,' says Aussie carrier

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Note 2 could go from 4.1 to 4.3, Telstra document suggests

The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 might never see Android 4.2, but instead jump straight to the next version of the OS — presumably Android 4.3. In its latest update advisory, Australian carrier Telstra said of the Galaxy Note 2 4.2 update —

"Samsung have elected globally to skip the 4.2.2 update for this device and will instead go to a newer version of Android. No schedule has been provided for this update."

There's been no official confirmation of this from Samsung, nor do we know whether this situation might affect Note 2 devices outside of Australia. But with the Android 4.3 launch seemingly close at hand, it wouldn't surprise us to see certain Android 4.1 phones skip directly to this next version of Jelly Bean.

While Android 4.2 is a relatively minor update for skinned devices, the extra time needed to roll out 4.3 could result Note 2 waiting a little longer for new TouchWiz features. In any case, hopefully the update situation will become clearer once Google officially unveils Android 4.3, something which is expected to occur at next Wednesday's San Francisco press event.

Source: Telstra

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini UK availability and pricing [Updated]

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Coming to CPW, Phones4u, O2, Vodafone and EE; first SIM-free prices​ starting to appear

Yesterday saw the official unveiling of the HTC One Mini — the manufacturer's miniaturized, lower-priced version of its current flagship. And we've published a full hands-on preview, walking through the device's features and comparing it to the full-sized One, as well as Samsung's rival Galaxy S4 Mini.

Over the past day we've started to see the first signs of when and where UK buyers will be able to pick up the device. Network operators O2 and Vodafone have confirmed on Twitter that they'll be offering the One Mini for sale — O2 says it's "coming soon," while Voda promises an August launch. EE spokesperson confirmed to Android Central that it'll be offering the HTC One Mini on its 4G network, but didn't offer any pricing or release date. 

Independent retailer Phones4u also has a pre-order page up for the silver One Mini, and promises £50 Google Play credit for pre-orders on EE, or £25 for all other networks. On the SIM-free side, Handtec is the first British retailer to post a pre-order price for the device — £379.99 inc. VAT, or £316.66 exc. VAT. Carphone Warehouse is the only retailer offering a similar price — £379.95 — with an Aug. 9 release date.

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3 years ago

Memo pegs US Cellular's Moto X launch for Aug. 26

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Larry Page is pretty excited about the Moto X today, but you and I, peasants that we are, will have to wait a wee bit longer for one on US Cellular, according to this internal memo we've received. 

Looks like marketing materials currently are slated to arrive the last week of August, with a device launch on Aug. 26. We're told that the "Wave 1, 2, & 3" part could refer to stores in USCC's LTE markets getting first dibs on the devices, with non-LTE markets to follow.

Still nothing official from Motorola or any of the carriers, but given that Motorola's hyping the hell out of this thing and we've seen the likes of Eric Schmidt walking around with it in broad daylight (to say nothing of about 3,000 other sightings), it can't be too long now.

More: Moto X forums; Thanks, anon!

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3 years ago

Larry Page on the Moto X: 'I'm very excited'

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Three simple words today from Google CEO, speaking on the long-awaited return of Motorola with the Moto X:

"I know you're all eagerly anticipating what Motorola is launching soon. Having been a tester for a while. I'm very excited."

Google's got an event laid on next Wednesday in California

More in our Moto X forums.

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3 years ago

LG Optimus F3 available today from Virgin Mobile for $179

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Price valid for customers with a Beyond Talk plan, starting at $35 per month

Previously announced on parent company Sprint for $29.99 on-contract, the LG Optimus F3 is now available off-contract for Virgin Mobile customers. The Optimus F3 can be purchased for $179.99 with Virgin's "Beyond Talk" no-contract plan, which offers unlimited data and messaging starting at $35 per month.

This budget-friendly phone comes with LTE connectivity on Sprint's network, with a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor and up to 16 hours of talk time on a single charge. A 4-inch display with Gorilla Glass 2 and a 5 MP rear camera are powered by the Android 4.1.2 operating system.

For more details and photos, see our hands-on with the LG Optimus F3 from Pepcom. A complete list of features and specifications are also available after the break.

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3 years ago

Huawei Ascend Mate launches as a Vodafone UK exclusive

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Free for £29 per month for pay monthly customers and £300 for pay as you go customers

After it was confirmed just over a week ago that Vodafone would be carrying Huawei's newest phablet, the Huawei Ascend Mate has launched as a Vodafone exclusive. We first saw this device at the Las Vegas CES 2013 in January.

Packing a generous 6.1-inch screen, the Ascend Mate uses an IPS display with 280 x 720 resolution. A 1.5 GHz quad-core processor is powered by the 4050 mAh battery inside. Internal memory comes in at 8 GB, which is expandable via micro-SD for an additional 32 GB. Android Jelly Bean 4.1 will be the shipping OS.

As for pricing, Vodafone states the "Huawei Ascend Mate is free for £29 per month (including 600 minutes, unlimited texts and 500MB of data) for pay monthly customers and £300 for pay as you go customers." The full press release can be found after the break.

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3 years ago

Android 4.3 on the Nexus 4: A second look at the next version of Android

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Bluetooth LE, OpenGL ES 3.0, new Wifi location settings and improved touch response

A week out from the likely announcement of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, we've just come across a second leak of the next version of Google's mobile OS. Android 4.3 (build JWR66N) originally leaked out for the Google Play edition Galaxy S4 a few weeks back, and today the same build is floating around for the Nexus 4. So we've decided to take it for a spin, and bring you some a quick look at how the next version of Android handles on Google's reference phone.

Check out our hands-on video after the break.

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini hands-on preview

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HTC's new 4.3-inch handset is no lightweight​

As much as we might like to believe otherwise, not every phone buyer is after a gargantuan slab of glass and plastic. And if you're the sort of person who likes your smartphones to be hand, pocket and wallet-friendly, it's not always possible to work the latest features and the fastest performance into that formula. So here's HTC with the HTC One Mini, a device that promises most of the features of the larger, more expensive 4.7-inch HTC One in a smaller chassis at a lower price point.

Despite recent successes with the HTC One, the past year hasn't been kind to HTC, and the manufacturer's mid-range efforts in particular have failed to impress. Last year in particular saw the HTC One brand being applied to phones which, if we're honest, probably didn't deserve it. This summer, then, the Taiwanese manufacturer will be looking to make a splash in the mid-range space its latest handset, officially announced today.

We've had the chance to spend some quality time with the HTC One Mini, and you'll find our full video walkthrough, along with more photos and words, after the break.

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3 years ago

In pictures: The HTC One Mini

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Check out our HTC One Mini photo gallery

The HTC One Mini is finally official, and we've had the chance to get our hands on HTC's latest miniature marvel. The One Mini packs many of the features of the full-sized One into a dinky 4.3-inch chassis, with a 720p display and re-tooled internals. At a glance, the Mini's design is much the same as its big brother — but take a closer look and there are plenty of subtle differences to see.

So be sure to check past the break for our HTC One Mini photo gallery, including side-by-side shots with the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini.

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3 years ago

By the numbers: HTC One Mini versus HTC One

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HTC's One Mini brings the already iconic look and style of its big brother the HTC One in a slightly smaller package. While a few seasons ago nobody would have considered the 4.3-inch phone a "mini", in today's landscape anything under 4.5-inches certainly qualifies. 

While the internals are scaled down as well, the Mini looks to be a very capable performer. But of course, the inevitable comparisons between what's under the glass of the "normal" HTC One against the specs of the Mini are going to happen. And we're going to kick it off.

Hit the break, have a look.

HTC One Mini hands-on | HTC One Mini in pictures | HTC One Mini forums

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini official specs

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The HTC One Mini is officially official, finally, and it's coming your way (maybe) pretty soon. The short version is that we've got a 4.3-inch Android 4.2 smartphone powered by a Snapdragon 400 processor at 1.4 GHz. The longer version is that it's a smaller, slightly less powerful version of the HTC One with most — but not all — of the bells and whistles on HTC's flagship phone for 2013.

Specs aren't everything, but they're still important. And we've got 'em all listed after the break.

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3 years ago

HTC One Mini officially announced

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New 4.3-incher packs 720p display, 'Ultrapixel' camera and latest versions of Android and Sense

HTC has just taken the wraps off the HTC One Mini, its new leading phone for the mid-range space. The One Mini packs a 4.3-inch 720p display and shares much of its design language with the full-sized version of the HTC One. The pack panel is furnished in brushed aluminum, and the phone uses the same "Ultrapixel" image sensor as the larger device (though without optical image stabilization.)

On the inside, the One Mini is powered by a dual-core 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 CPU, backed up by 1GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. And it's running much the same software that was recently pushed to the HTC One — Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and HTC Sense. Like the larger One, it features the BlinkFeed home screen reader and "Zoe" shooting capabilities, as well as automatic video highlights. So essentially, you're getting the full-blooded Sense experience here.

The HTC One Mini will launch in select countries in August and globally from September. Head past the break for more official renders, and be sure to check out our extensive hands-on preview.

More coverage: HTC One Mini hands-on preview

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