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4 years ago

HTC Thunderbolt finally getting its Ice Cream Sandwich update

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What more can we say? (Don't answer that!) The HTC Thunderbolt has its Ice Cream Sandwich update ready, and will soon start rolling out to devices. It will be Android 4.0.4 with Sense 3.6, and the update package is about 380MB. If you still have a Thunderbolt rattling around in a drawer somewhere, dig it out, dust it off, and plug it in in preparation. This update won't fix the peeling kickstand, but maybe it can help the battery life a bit. Anyhoo, it's nice to know that the Thunderbolt was not forgotten, no matter how hard we all tried to forget it.

Source: Verizon (pdf); Via: everyone

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4 years ago

Finally get your Nexus 4? We'll help get you started

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It looks like Google finally is getting a handle on its Nexus 4 supply/retail issues. Its flagship Jelly Bean phone went back on sale this week and boxes should be hitting doorsteps anytime now. For a good many of you, this will be your first time with the Nexus 4. For others, it'll be the first time with any Nexus.

So where to begin? Even if you've had an Android smartphone in the past, a Nexus is both familiar and new, full of options some other smartphones don't have, while at the same time lacking features other manufacturers pack into their own phones. 

Let's take a look at some of the thing new Nexus 4 owners need to know, need to watch out for -- and need to take advantage of.

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4 years ago

Xperia T/TX/TL Jelly Bean firmware certified ahead of release

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Sony's first round of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean-based firmware has passed through certification at the PCTRB forum, a usual indicator that the update is just a few weeks away from being pushed out to handsets. Firmware for the international Xperia T and TX and the AT&T Xperia TL has passed certification, meaning those handsets should be first in line for the Sony Jelly Bean upgrade. In the case of the Xperia TL, carrier certification may lead to a slight delay, but TL owners can rest assured that the bulk of the work is done.

Late last year Sony promised to release Jelly Bean updates for the Xperia T and TX in "mid-Q1," so it looks like things are going according to schedule. If you own one of those phones, we recommend keeping an eye out for the update in mid-to-late February.

Source: PCTRB; via: XperiaBlog

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4 years ago

T-Mobile updates its Galaxy S2, Galaxy S3 phones

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A couple more updates for you on this fine Thursday. T-Mobile is sending out updates for the Galaxy S2 and Galaxy S3. The GS2 update is said to include security enhancements, a "Qualcomm fix" and "Vlingo S Voice improvements," while the GS3 update has security enhancements and "improved user experience." Both updates are available via KIES or over the air.

  • For Galaxy S3 owners: You'll need to be on Android 4.1.1, software version T99UVDLJA to get the 4MB update.
  • For Galaxy S2 owners: You'll need to be back on Android 2.3.6, software version T989UVLDG for the 6.5MB update.

Galaxy S2 users on Android 4.0.4 looking for an update should have already received their bugfix update last week.

Source: T-Mobile (GS2 update, GS3 update)

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4 years ago

Sprint's HTC EVO 4G LTE getting an update today

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Heads up, folks. Looks like the Sprint HTC EVO 4G LTE is getting itself a bit of an update today. We're not quite sure exactly what's new in the 44-megabyte update (the changelog you see here is the same as last month's Jelly Bean update), bringing things to version 3.16.651.3, but folks in our forums are reporting improvements to the proximity sensor, a properly silenced camera shutter (for when it should be silent), and voicemail seems to be improved. We'll update should we hear anything official.

Update: Sprint's finally posted the changelog. Here's what's new:

  • Proximity sensor improvements while on a call or listening to voicemail
  • Ability to output audio/video to HDTV (and other external displays via MHL cable
  • WiFi Connection improvements
  • Bluetooth compatibility improvements
  • Android process/application shutdown resolved

Source: EVO 4G LTE forums

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4 years ago

Metro PCS gets the LG Spirit 4G

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Metro PCS has announced it'll carry the LG Spirit, a 4.5-inch Android 4.0 smartphone with 4G LTE data. It's powered by a dual core processor running at 1.2GHz, has a 2150 mAh battery and sports a 5-megapixel rear camera and a 1.3MP shooter up front. The Spirit is available online and in stores today for $199 (after a $70 mail-in rebate). Metro PCS' no-contract plans start at $40 a month.

More: Metro PCS

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4 years ago

LG Optimus L7 II Dual pictured ahead of possible MWC launch

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It’s almost a year since we first met the LG L-style series at Mobile World Congress 2012 -- the original line-up consisted of the Optimus L3, L5 and L7. And ahead of this year’s show, there are signs the Korean manufacturer could have at least one follow-up in the pipeline.

According to reports from Russian site Hi-Tech, backed up by what seem to be leaked renders of the phone, the clumsily-named "LG Optimus L7 II Dual" will be heading to Russia in late February, and it’ll pack dual-SIM capabilities. (Note the capacitive SIM-switching button on the images above.)

Other reported specs include a 1GHz dual-core processor, a 4.3-inch IPS display, an 8MP camera and 2460mAh battery -- supposedly enough for two days per charge. On the software side, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is said to be on-board, along with LG customizations including QuickMemo, QuickTranslator and QSlide. In Russia, the phone will reportedly retail for 12,990 rubles ($432).

Assuming this information is legit, we can probably expect to see the Optimus L7 II Dual at this year’s MWC -- and we imagine there’ll probably be a vanilla L7 II on display too, with a standard single SIM slot.

Source: Hi-Tech@Mail.ru; via: PocketNow

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4 years ago

Sony launches 'My Xperia' phone security service

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Many phone manufacturers -- and some third party apps -- offer a way to track down and secure a lost or stolen handset, and today Sony's bringing this kind of service to some of its Xperia smartphones. The company has announced the pilot launch of "My Xperia," which Sony fans might remember from a recent ROM leak and earlier trademark filing.

The premise is pretty simple and familiar -- link your Xperia phone up to MyXperia.com. Then, if the phone's lost or stolen, there'll be a few options available, as Sony Experience Planner Marcin Zielinski explains on the company's official blog --

  • Locate your smartphone on a map
  • Sound an alert to get someone’s attention – it’ll also override silent mode and wake the display
  • Lock the phone to keep info private, and ping a message with contact details or…
  • Erase both internal and external SD card info / data if required

Sony's planning a "phased launch" for the service, starting on the Xperia Acro S in Nordic countries, and moving to other Android 4.0-based 2012 Xperia phones  in the weeks ahead. Eligible users will receive an update through the Update Center app, Zielinski says.

Based on the presence of "My Xperia" in leaked Jelly Bean firmware for the Xperia S, it's probably a safe to say that that phone will be added to the pilot when the update is finalized. We'd also expect to see it on the new Xperia Z, as well as whatever Sony shows off at Mobile World Congress, all of which should be running the company's latest Android-based software.

Source: Sony Mobile Blog

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Xcover 2 to launch in UK by March

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Following last week's global Galaxy Xcover 2 launch, Samsung UK has revealed that the phone will be headed to British shores, with a UK launch for the ruggedized handset scheduled to occur "by March."

The Galaxy Xcover 2 is Samsung's most latest hardened, IP67-certified water and dust-resistant smartphone, powered by a dual-core 1GHz processor with 1GB of RAM, and running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box. Other highlights include a 5MP camera, 4GB of internal storage and a microSD slot.

We don't typically expect bleeding-edge internals in this kind of smartphone, but the Galaxy Xcover 2 certainly packs more of a punch than previous ruggedized phones. For more details on this device, head on over to our original announcement post, or check the presser after the break.

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4 years ago

New mid-range Sony phones tipped as Xperia SP, Xperia L

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After unveiling the high-end Xperia Z at CES, Sony Mobile is widely expected to follow up with mid-range and entry-level  counterparts at Mobile World Congress next month. We've heard rumored codenames and specs for both phones, but so far we've been left guessing which of the remaining eighteen letters of the alphabet Sony will choose.

That mystery could be over today, as entries on Indonesian certification site Postel brings news of possible final branding. Records on Postel have a good track record in outing Sony branding -- almost a year ago to the day, it revealed "Nypon" and "Kumquat" as Xperias P and U, a month ahead of the official announcement.

Today listings show the mid-range "HuaShan" (C530X) as Xperia SP, and the entry-level C210X as Xperia L.

According to leaked specs, Xperia SP will feature a 1.7GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU, with a screen resolution of 1280x720, while the Xperia L is tipped to pack a 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus chip. Both phones reportedly run Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean.

We'll have to wait until Mobile World Congress for the final word on Sony's new mid-range stuff, but fortunately we'll be live from the show this February to bring you full coverage.

Source: Postel; via: Xperia Blog

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4 years ago

Android 4.2.1 pushing for the Sprint Galaxy Nexus

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It's been a scant couple of weeks since the Sprint Galaxy Nexus saw an update to Android 4.2. Today it's got another update rolling out. This one brings things to Android 4.2.1 build JRO03U.L700GA02) and includes the following:

  • Redesigned camera interface and new Photo Sphere feature (a 360-degree panorama mode)
  • Notifications Shade accessible by swiping top screen edge downwards; swipe down with two fingers to view notifications; tap the notification to expand and take action on it.
  • Lockscreen widgets to access certain apps without unlocking the screen; sidescroll right for camera or left for other widgets (time and weather, gmail, etc.)

You can snag the update over the air (hit your settings>about menu for that), or download manually from Google and apply  it that way. (If you need help with that, hit up this thread in our forums.)

Note that this update is for the Sprint Galaxy Nexus and not the Verizon Galaxy Nexus. Repeat: Verizon's Galaxy Nexus has not been updated. Still.

Get help in our Sprint Galaxy Nexus forumsMore at Sprint

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4 years ago

Specs battle: BlackBerry Z10 vs. the best of Android

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Comparing the Z10 to the Galaxy S3 and others

Now that BlackBerry has finally managed to get some new hardware out the door, it's time to put it up against the best of Android. The BlackBerry Z10 is your basic black-slab phone, not unlike what we've come to know and love (or at least accept as standard design) with Android devices the past couple years. 

The specs probably won't send your jaw toward the floor or anything, but then again they're not really supposed to.

After the break, we've got a full breakdown of the BlackBerry Z10 (and read CB's full Z10 review if you get a minute) versus the Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC Droid DNA, Motorola RAZR MAXX HD and the Nexus 4.

And be sure to hit up our pals at CrackBerry for all the latest BB10 news.

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4 years ago

Android and BlackBerry 10: How they stack up

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It’s BlackBerry 10 day today, and you knew we had to take a few minutes to see just what BlackBerry has to offer. Right off the bat, we’re going to say it’s good enough to keep folks still using the BlackBerry platform happy that they hung around, and probably even tempt a few people to give BlackBerry a try for the first time. Kevin has a good look at the hardware and some of the UI and features in the video. Give it a watch, then join us after the break we can see how it all matches up to Android.

For more info, be sure to check out CrackBerry's reviews:

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4 years ago

Nexus 4 back on sale at UK Google Play Store (Update: France too)

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Update: The Nexus 4 is back on sale through Google Play in France too, with a 2-3 week shipping period.

Brits, here's your first chance of the year to get hold of a Nexus 4 at the crazy-low Google Play Store price. As before, prices are £239 for 8GB, or £279 for 16GB. Phones ordered today are scheduled to ship within 1-2 weeks.

And if you're in the U.S., the Nexus 4 still appears to be on sale stateside, and the links above are valid for you, too. If you're seeing the Nexus 4 for sale on any other regions' Google Play Stores, be sure to hit the comments and let us know!

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4 years ago

ZTE teases Grand Memo for Mobile World Congress

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Because it's never too early to start pimping hashtags, ZTE this morning sent out invites to its Mobile World Congress press event on Feb. 25, promising to show a new Android device in the ZTE Grand Memo (which it recently showed off in Hong Kong), as well as a phone with the fledgling Mozilla OS. The hashtags, of course, are #ztegrandmemo and #ztemozilla.

Mobile World Congress runs Feb. 25-28 in Barcelona, Spain. We'll be there, of course, to bring you the whole thing.

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