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4 years ago

Acer Liquid Gallant E350 manual reveals forthcoming lower-end offering

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Once more we're catching sight of a forthcoming Ice Cream Sandwich smartphone from Acer. Following the Cloudmobile and Liquid Glow going up for pre-order and sale respectively, the latest offering is set to be called the Liquid Gallant E350. And, like the other two, it isn't a bad looking thing. 

Spec wise, the Gallant is closer to the the Glow than the Cloudmobile, and if this render is anything to go by it will also be available in the UK. The device has been outed on Acer's website, where the full manual for the phone has been posted. 

So, what are we looking at exactly in the specs column. Nothing that'll be setting the world on fire but lets take a look:

  • Android 4.0
  • 1GHz MediaTek MT6575 single-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 4GB onboard storage, microSD card slot
  • 4.3-inch qHD display
  • 5MP rear camera with LED Flash
  • 1500mAh removable battery
  • 9.9mm thin

Additionally, as we see the Gallant has on-screen buttons, unlike the Glow which almost looked like it was designed with Gingerbread in mind. Flicking through the manual further also shows that Swype will also come pre-installed on the Gallant. The selection of screenshots contained within also shows off what looks pretty much like stock Ice Cream Sandwich. There are a few customizations, like widgets in the notification tray, but even the camera application is stock. Not bad for what is essentially an entry-level device. 

As this is just a manual, there is no indication of markets to expect the Gallant, or how much it would cost. But, based on the UK price for the Liquid Glow, we'd not be expecting anything too far away from £150 ($236) SIM free. 

Source: Acer

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4 years ago

Sony wins EISA green smartphone award for Xperia P

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Sony's aluminum-clad Xperia P has been dubbed the "European Green Smartphone of 2012-13" by industry body EISA (European Imaging and Sound Association). The win, which places the Xperia P in good company with fellow EISA winners the HTC One S and Samsung Galaxy S3, is the company's third award from the organization. Last year Sony scooped up two awards for the Xperia Arc and Xperia mini (cameraphone of the year and green phone of the year respectively).

In a statement, the EISA praised the Xperia P's power efficiency, as well as Sony's use of environmentally friendly materials --

“The smart phone market is developing rapidly as models come packed with ever-increasing functionality. Unfortunately, the trend towards the use of bigger screens and embedded batteries can make recycling harder. The Sony Xperia P outperforms the competition in terms of energy performance while making efficient use of materials of environmental concern, such as precious metals and has a low copper content. With the Xperia P, Sony successfully follows the performance of last year’s winner, its Xperia Mini.”

In our review of the phone back in June, we were impressed by the Xperia P's build quality and value for money. And the phone's due to receive an update to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich soon, which should drastically improve its UI and overall responsiveness.

We don't often focus on the environmental cost of smartphones -- though we've seen eco-friendly models like the Samsung Replenish attempting to tap into this market previously. In any case, kudos to Sony for coming out on top on green credentials for a second year running. Would something like this affect your choice of smartphone? Let us know in the comments.

Source: Sony Xperia Product Blog, EISA

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4 years ago

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean leaks for the Samsung Galaxy S3, we go hands-on

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An early Samsung-made Jelly Bean firmware for the international Galaxy S3 has leaked, and we've taken it for a spin

Ladies and gentlemen, we have our first Android 4.1 leak for an existing phone. Following the appearance of a blurry-cam video of the ROM yesterday, a pre-release Jelly Bean firmware for the international Galaxy S III (Galaxy S3, GT-i9300) has leaked out online over at SamFirmware​. The ROM is based upon Android 4.1.1, carries the build name I9300XXDLG4, and was built a couple of weeks ago on July 31. It's a test ROM that's not of release quality, so expect crashes and bugs if you decide to install this one.

On the surface, the Galaxy S3 running this leaked firmware is still a Galaxy S3, and the TouchWiz Nature UX is still the UI you'll see most of the time. However, new Jelly Bean features like Google Now and the redesigned notification area are present in this build. The latter is a little janky in the leaked ROM -- location services don't seem to be working, but the voice-activated Google Search was fully functional, and fast as ever.

Performance-wise, the leaked Jelly Bean ROM doesn't offer huge performance boosts over ICS, but the S3 was a beast even on Android 4.0, so we'd argue there isn't much room for improvement in this area anyway. The Jelly Bean-specific launcher enhancements weren't shown in the this ROM -- for example, you're not able to make widgets resize to fit into a certain space, or nudge icons out of the way. We're not sure whether Samsung will include this in its final Jelly Bean firmware, as it likes to do its own thing in the TouchWiz launcher anyway.

Finally, NFC support was enabled in this build, though the phone became a bit confused when trying to transfer files to and from other Jelly Bean devices -- essentially, it would try to use S Beam even when the other device didn't support it. Again, not surprising for a leaked pre-release ROM, and something we full expect to be sorted before the final Jelly Bean update hits.

Check out our hands-on video above, or, if you're feeling brave, you can find instructions for flashing the ROM itself on your international (not U.S.) Galaxy S3 at the source link below. We've also got a couple more screenshots after the break.

Source: SamFirmware

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4 years ago

Galaxy S2 and Galaxy Note reportedly due for Jelly Bean updates this fall

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It's been rumored before, but now the signs for Samsung Galaxy S2 and Galaxy Note owners are looking a bit more hopeful. This morning unofficial Samsung blog SamMobile​ is reporting that sources have told it that both the (international) Galaxy S2 and original Galaxy Note are be due to receive updates to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean later this year.

The site reports that internal feasibility tests by Samsung have proved successful, and that a September to October timeframe is estimated for the S2, presumably with the Note following shortly thereafter.

While SamMobile​ has proved accurate with this kind of information in the past, bear in mind that this is not an official confirmation from Samsung, which has said nothing publicly on Jelly Bean for either device. We'd also expect a longer wait for the U.S. versions of the both phones to get Jelly Bean, even if the reported timeframe for international updates holds true. As ever, U.S. carriers will want to test and verify the new firmware before pushing out to customers.

Source: SamMobile

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4 years ago

The Verizon Galaxy S3 secure bootloader is no longer an issue

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It appears that a leaked unsecure bootloader for the Verizon Galaxy S3 (Galaxy S III) has lead to a hack that allows the bootloader on the retail version to be replaced. In a nutshell, this means that developers can now build custom kernels and flash them via Odin, and nobody will need (or want) to buy the developer model when it comes out.

Right now, I would recommend that the average user just sit back and watch. Let some developers worry about versions and wait for the first person to put it to good use -- which will probably be soon. I just wanted to pass the news along, as I know there's a few of you out there that have been waiting. For more details, hit the source link below. Happy hacking!

Source: XDA-Developers

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4 years ago

Samsung: 10 million Galaxy Notes sold worldwide

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We were on the ground at Samsung's Galaxy Note 10.1 launch event earlier today, where the company briefly announced that it's sold more than 10 million Galaxy Note smartphones worldwide. The original Note, which made its debut in late October 2011 in Europe before coming to the U.S. in February, was the first 5-plus-inch phone to be met with mainstream success, taking many in the mobile world by surprise.

Samsung surpasses 10 million units sold a little over four months after it hit the 5 million milestone. We imagine the U.S. launches of the Note, combined with continued promotion throughout the recent Olympic Games, were instrumental in pushing the Note over the 10 million mark.

The company is expected to launch a successor to the original Galaxy Note at its pre-IFA press conference on Aug. 29 in Berlin, Germany, with rumors pointing to a larger screen still, and a bump up to a quad-core CPU. We'll be live from Berlin on the 29th, so keep it locked to AC for future Galaxy Note announcements.

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S3 spotted running official Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

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Rumors have been circulating over the past couple of weeks suggesting Samsung’s hard at work on a Jelly Bean update for the (international) Galaxy S3, and that release is slated for late August or early September. Today we have the first indication of what this new software version might actually look like, as video footage of Android 4.1 on the S3 has leaked out from Mexican site AndroidMX.

The video shows exactly what we’d expect Jelly Bean on the Galaxy S3 to look like -- you’ve still got all your TouchWiz customizations there, and that’s still 90 percent of what you’ll see in normal operation. However, fancy new Jelly Bean features like Google Now and the redesigned notification area are present and accounted for.

As for speed, the S3 looks fast on Android 4.1, but then it’s pretty speedy on ICS, too, so that’s nothing new.

Regardless of how much new stuff there ends up being in this update, international Galaxy S3 owners will be hoping that the rumors of a release in the next month or so turn out to be true. We’ll certainly be crossing our fingers.

Source: YouTube, via: SamMobile

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4 years ago

HTC CEO tells staff 'kill bureaucracy,' improve communication, be more decisive

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It’s no secret that 2012 hasn’t been kind to HTC. Despite releasing strong products as part of its HTC One line earlier in the year, the improvement in the HTC’s smartphones hasn’t been reflected in the company’s financial results. The Taiwanese manufacturer recently reported 45 percent year-on-year fall in revenues for July, and the second quarter picture was similarly grim.

As such, CEO Peter Chou recently emailed employees, HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang and the company’s board of directors calling for a change in HTC’s inner workings. The internal email, leaked to Bloomberg and confirmed as authentic by an HTC spokesperson, calls for staffers to kill the “bureaucracy” that “crept in without clear ownership.” Chou said, “We agreed to do something but we either didn’t do it or executed it loosely.”

In the Aug. 9 email, the HTC boss also bemoaned the fact that HTC’s sales were sliding, while the overall smartphone market was going. And in possible reference to Samsung and Apple, he added “our competitors can leverage their scale, brand awareness and big marketing budget to do things which HTC could not do. The fast growth from the last two years has slowed us down.”

Chou noted that HTC needed to “build on its culture, ‘committed’ employees and customer relationships,” according to Bloomberg. On products, he praised the HTC One X, saying it had “the industry’s best rating,” and revealing, without going into specifics, that more strong products were in the pipeline for late 2012 and early 2013.

The company will be likely hoping that its rumored refresh of the One X, in addition to its Windows Phone efforts and possibly an upcoming 5-inch phone will help to reverse its fortunes later this year.

Source: Bloomberg

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4 years ago

Kyocera Rise will be available in Sprint stores starting August 19 for only $19

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The Kyocera Rise will be available on Sprint starting August 19 for only $19, and on August 31 on Virgin Mobile for $99, it has been announced.

The Rise was first announced at CTIA -- a 3.5-inch Android phone that was clearly designed as an entry-level device. Featuring a 3.5-inch HVGA display, a 3.2 MP camera, 1GHz processor and powered by a 1500mAh battery, the specs are reasonable though nothing outstanding. One key feature on the Kyocera Rise is the inclusion of Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box, making for an improved user experience over the Gingerbread-based ROMs on man entry-level phones.

For more on the phone, be sure to check out our full hands-on preview.

Source:  Sprint

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 availability

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Update: Folks in New York City will be able to pick the Note 10.1 up at the Union Square Best Buy a day early!

The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 has arrived, and it'll be launching tomorrow, Aug. 16, around the world. Available in white and blue flavors, the S-Pen-enabled Android 4.0 tablet will sell in the U.S. for $499 for the 16GB model and $549 for the 32GB version at Best Buy, HH Gregg, Office Depot, Amazon, and Tiger Direct.

Elsewhere, the Galaxy Note 10.1 will make its international debut at Samsung's flagship brand store at the Westfield shopping center in Stratford, London on the same day. UK pricing is expected to come in at around £450 for the Wifi and 3G/HSPA model, though there's been no specific announcement for international pricing.

For more info on the Samsing Galaxy Note 10.1, check out our extensive hands-on preview

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4 years ago

Sony Xperia Acro S heading to the U.S, bringing Xperia Advance and Tipo Dual along too

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Losing track of all these Sony Mobile devices? We wouldn't say that we blame you. U.S. customers will soon have another three to choose from, as Sony has posted coming soon links to their U.S. website for the Xperia Acro S, Tipo Dual and Advance. 

If you're not so familiar with any of these, here's a quick rundown of each device:

  • Xperia Acro S - 4.3-inch HD display with Mobile Bravia Engine and wet finger tracking at 1280x720, 1.5GHz Qualcomm dual-core processor, 16GB internal storage, 1GB RAM, Android 4.0, 12.1MP rear camera with LED flash, NFC, microSD card slot, Playstation certified and available in white and black.
  • Xperia Tipo Dual - Dual SIM, 3.2-inch TFT display at 320x480, 800MHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 2.5GB internal storage, 512MB RAM, microSD card slot, 3.2MP rear camera, Android 4.0 and available in white and black.
  • Xperia Advance - U.S. version of the Xperia Go, 3.5-inch HVGA display, Android 2.3 Gingerbread, 1GHz dual-core processor, 8GB internal storage, 512MB RAM, ruggedized. 

Of the three, the Xperia Acro S is clearly the standout model. While not particularly groundbreaking, it stacks up pretty well spec wise against the current higher end offerings from competitor OEM's. We are though expecting a whole new crop of Sony Xperia devices to be unveiled in 2 weeks time at IFA 2012 in Berlin -- where we'll be to bring you every last morsel -- so even the Acro S could soon find itself outdated. 

No pricing or release date is given at this time, and as this is the official Sony site, expect unsubsidized prices when they do arrive. 

Source: Sony

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4 years ago

Huawei Ascend P1 goes on sale in the UK SIM-free

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If you've been looking forward to picking up the Huawei Ascend P1 SIM-free, today is your lucky day. The device is now in stock at UK retailer Clove and will set you back a respectable £309 + VAT. The Ascend P1 may not have been getting the same attention as the likes of the HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3 but specs wise it is a pretty decent piece of hardware.

Running Android 4.0 and powered by a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 CPU the Huawei Ascend P1 isn't to be sniffed at. With a 4.3 Super AMOLED screen, an 8MP BSI camera and Dolby Sound System new P1 owners should have plenty to get excited about. It may not be the biggest and the best in todays fast-paced smartphone market, but we gave it a great review and sales should be pretty good.

More info from Clove at the source link below.

Source: Clove

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4 years ago

Purported Samsung Galaxy Note 2 front panel photo leaks

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Today brings more Galaxy Note 2 leakage, though we'd put more stock in this latest photo than the questionable render that showed up 24 hours ago. The latest leaked photo comes from French site Nowhereelse, and claims to show the front panel and screen of the upcoming large form factor phone. From the setting and the way the two figures in the background are dressed, it looks like this sample may have just rolled off the production line. What's more, the ruler indicates that this screen is approximately 14cm -- or 5.5 inches -- diagonally, tying in with earlier rumors that a bump up to a 5.5-inch panel was on the cards.

More interesting is the fact that if you measure the aspect ratio of the screen, it's 16:9, not 16:10, indicating a transition to a full widescreen resolution. That, combined with the minimal amount of bezel on show, suggests that this device should be easier to hold than the original Note, or competitors like LG's squarish Optimus Vu. It also looks like Samsung's opted for a similar button setup to the Galaxy S3 and international Galaxy Note, with a large central home button and capacitive keys at either side.

However, we should mention that Samsung is now well-versed in the art of foiling online leakers and rumor-mongers. The company even designed and manufactured several alternate designs for the Galaxy S3, one of which leaked out multiple times, and bore no resemblance to the device we now know as the Samsung Galaxy S3. So while we expect the basic dimensions and aspect ratio of the Note 2 to resemble what we see here, this might not exactly match what we see in Berlin in a couple of weeks.

Stay tuned to AC for full coverage of the Galaxy Note 2 as we approach the Aug. 29 announcement event.

Source Nowhereelse, via: Engadget

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4 years ago

Black Galaxy S3 appears on T-Mobile USA site, still no word on official release

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For a device that hasn't yet been officially announced, the black Samsung Galaxy S III (Galaxy S3) is certainly getting its share of exposure. It first appeared on Samsung's Facebook page, then at various retailers in the UK, and now it seems it may be heading stateside on T-Mobile.

Eagle-eyed Tmo fans have spotted the black Galaxy S3 on the carrier's comparison site, which showcases its range of smartphones while telling viewers how awesome its network is. And the first device to appear on the carrier's virtual podium is none other than the Galaxy S3 in black. Unlike earlier promotional images, there's no room for confusion here -- this is definitely a black Galaxy S3, rather than the pebble blue variant that we first saw back in May.

There's no indication of when the black S3 might arrive on T-Mobile, but the some UK retailers are expecting stock of the international S3 in black in the next 4-6 weeks, so we wouldn't be too surprised to see T-Mobile's version launch around the same time.

Tmo subscribers, would you be tempted by a Galaxy S3 in black on your network? Hit the comments and let us know!

Source: T-Mobile

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4 years ago

LG hails 5 million LTE smartphones sold worldwide

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Optimus Vu also reaches half a million units sold

LG has announced that it’s reached a total of five million 4G LTE smartphones sold worldwide, up from four million a month ago. Announcing the milestone today, LG notes that it now has more than ten LTE smartphones on the market in South Korea, Japan, the U.S. and certain European countries. A traditional area of strength for LG, its LTE sales are lead by its flagship Optimus LTE, which contributed more than two million to the overall total.

The manufacturer also says it’s shifted more than 500,000 units of the Optimus Vu, its 5-inch slab that aims to compete with Samsung’s Galaxy Note (check out our review for more on the Vu). That number’s sure to increase when the Vu arrives in the U.S. later this quarter. In addition, LG is expected to launch the Optimus LTE II on Verizon in the U.S. around the same time, under the name “LG Spectrum II.”

For more numbers and back-patting, check LG’s full press release after the break.

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