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2 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Nexus hands-on video and initial review

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After months of speculation and hype, we finally have the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the first device to ship with the brand new Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS. The phone recently went on sale in the UK, and we’re hoping to hear something (anything) out of Verizon about the Nexus’s US availability over the next week or so. We’ve already given you a first look at the device based on pre-release units at the recent Samsung Galaxy Note World Tour, but today we can bring you our initial thoughts on the GSM retail version that’s slowly becoming available across Europe.

We’ll have a full review in due course, but here’s a little spoiler: this is a phone we think you’ll want to buy. Read on to find out why.

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Exhibit II 4G

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A few weeks ago T-Mobile announced their first no-contract 4G device, the Samsung Exhibit II 4G which is an upgrade of the not so old Samsung Exhibit 4G. T-Mobile took to some pretty agressive pricing to help move this device pricing it at only $199 without a contract, or $29 if you wished to sign a contract for some odd reason. Most of the time we associate a low cost device with a low quality device, but Samsung has done an exceptional job with this device.

The overall build quality is extremely nice, the device has a 3.7-inch WVGA display which is rather vibrant and displays colors beautifully. On the back you have a 3MP camera so if you were looking to replace your point and shoot, this may not do it for you, but it also includes a front facing camera which is great for video chatting with the family. Powered by a 1GHz processor the device moves fluently, and the TouchWiz that is running over Android 2.3.5 gives you the most current Gingerbread version, even on a device with such a low price point.

Pair this low cost device with a low cost monthly plan and you could have yourself a beautiful piece of Samsung hardware running a recent version of Android. Hit the break for a quick hands on video as well as some more shots of the device.

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Motorola Admiral

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Sure looks extremely similar to a BlackBerry device, doesn't it? Well, the Motorola Admiral is far from a BlackBerry device, in fact it is an Android 2.3.4 powered device that offers a 3.1-inch display and a physical QWERTY on the bottom. For someone like myself who began their smartphone days with a BlackBerry device the form factor is very comforting, and the keyboard is the best I have felt to date on any Android device. Very similar in size and shape to the Motorola Droid Pro, the biggest difference on this one is the display.

Unlike the Droid Pro, this 3.1-inch display offers a 640x480 resolution, making the display a lot crisper, and worth using. While 3.1-inch is small in comparison to most of the 4-inch displays we are used to seeing, the combination of this sized display and the keyboard makes for a near perfect (to me atleast) form factor.

Software wise this is running Android 2.3.4 with the usual PhilBlur on top of it, but the 1.2GHz processor allows the software to move quite smoothly. The 5MP camera on the back also supports video capture of up to 720P, which is more than enough for a camera on your cell phone.

Priced at only $99 on a new contract, if you are looking to replace your old BlackBerry device with something new, or looking to regain that form factor, the Motorola Admiral is something you won't want to pass up. Hit the break for a video tour, and some additional pictures!

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung DoubleTime

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It's been a while since we have seen a Froyo-powered device launch, but that doesn't mean that we should immediately write it off by any means. Samsung has brought the DoubleTime to the table with a new form factor, and for its intended purpose it does quite well. With the flip up QWERTY keyboard it is rather easy to tell that this device is aimed towards those who will be using it for heavy messaging, likely the teen crowd. Sure, most devices are launching with Gingerbread, and now we are starting to see Ice Cream Sandwich devices rolling out, but the Samsung DoubleTime performs quite well with Froyo.

The 3.2-inch 320x480 on the front is a bit small for my large fingers, but once the device is flipped open the inside screen was rather easy to navigate with the directional pad. The keys are spaced out well, even though the whole phone is rather tiny, it is quite comfortable to type on. The physical verse capacitive buttons on the front is going to come down to personal preference, for me I like the you can click and feel the click, verse tap and hope you hit the right place. If you are looking for a spec'd out gamers device, this is not for you, but if you are looking for something for your teenage child, or an entry level Android device that will allow you to easily send messages on the go you will definitely want to check this out. Hit the break for a quick hands on video and a few more pictures.

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2 years ago

AT&T pulls post asking whether you're interested in the Samsung Galaxy Nexus

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And, once again, it looks like social media might have stuck its head where it doesn't belong. You might have noticed yesterday when AT&T on its Google+ page ignited a bit of a fire about the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. While the GSM version is now available in the UK (and it's an unlocked, pentaband device, so it'll work just fine on AT&T if you were to import one here), we're still waiting on an official release date from Verizon. (Yes, we know full well about the latest Nov. 21 rumor, and we've heard that one ourselves numerous times. Still, not a done deal. Yet.)

Anyhoo. AT&T asked the following:

We expected requests for this for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus which we do not have any new information to share. but do hear your requests to add it to our portfolio.

Out of curiosity how many of you are interested in the Galaxy Nexus? Please +1 this comment so we can see the demand here on Google+ so we can share interest here with our product teams. Thank you.

That post -- and its parent thread -- have since been deleted. Here's what we think happened: The Galaxy Nexus is Verizon's baby in the United States, at least at launch. For better or for worse, that's how it is. And we've got a feeling that someone at AT&T was politely reminded that this is the case, and the post was taken down.

We're still holding out hope that we'll see a proper GSM release of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus here in the United States. (And maybe one for Sprint as well.) But we're also resigned to the fact that we're not likely to see one for a month or two, at minimum. Importing's always an option -- albeit an expensive one.

Hat tip to +Jeremy Sikora

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2 years ago

Express from Sprint brings Android 2.3 and QWERTY keyboard for just $19.99

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Sprint's taken the wraps off the awkwardly named Express from Sprint. And just as we first showed you a few weeks ago, you're looking at a physical QWERTY keyiboard with center jog wheel, a 2.6-inch touchscreen, and Android 2.3. It's got a 3.2MP camera 'round the back, a 1500 mAh battery and can serve as a 3G Wifi hotspot for up to five devices. And, yes, it looks like a BlackBerry.

This guy's only available online, and it's going to cost you just a mere $19.99 on contract. We've got full specs after the break.

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the Samsung Captivate Glide

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Last year we saw the Samsung Captivate, a great device which was quite popular, and this year we have the Samsung Captivate Glide. Unlike the original Captivate, the Captivate Glide has a slide out keyboard -- as if you couldn't tell by the name of the device. QWERTY sliders are usually written off by many as they would rather have a thinner device with a large display and just type on that, but Samsung has done a great job with this device keeping it relatively thin and rather light while including the physical keyboard.

The Captivate Glider has a 4-inch display and is powered by a dual-core 1GHz Tegra 2 processor, and has a great feel in the hand. The camera has also been upgraded on the device, now including an 8MP shooter with a flash on the back, as well as your standard VGA camera on the front. As you would imagine the device does run Android 2.3.4 with TouchWiz over it, but the device is extremely responsive, and the interface is very user friendly. If you are looking for a mid to high range device with a physical QWERTY, the Samsung Captivate Slider is definitely something you will want to give a go. For a quick hands on and some more images be sure to hit the break!

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the LG Optimus Slider

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Ah, yes - another prepaid device to hit the market for Virgin Mobile, but come on now who doesn't like selection? The latest device to hit Virgin Mobile is the LG Optimus Slider, the revamped and enhanced LG Optimus S that is currently available from them. Featuring a slightly different form factor -- and by slightly we mean it contains a sliding QWERTY keyboard, the device is sure to please the messaging crowd.

With a 3.2-inch display, this sliding QWERTY runs Android 2.3.4 in a vanilla form, giving quite a pleasurable overall experience. The device certainly doesn't have the fastest of processors, but it is more than enough to ensure that a smooth experience while flipping through your home pages, and scrolling in your app drawer. On the back there is a 3.2MP shooter, nothing overly impressive and sadly lacking a flash, but for those looking for something basic just to capture memories while on the go it will certainly do the job. Priced at only $199 with a monthly bill of only $35 for unlimited data as well as 300 minutes, it is a pretty good deal. Hit the break for some more pictures as well as a quick video walk through.

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2 years ago

Motorola Mobility stockholders approve merger with Google

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Not that we ever really expected otherwise, but the shareholders of Motorola Mobility today approved the company's merger with Google. Motorola says 99 percent of the votes were in favor of the merger, and the votes represented about 74 percent of the company's outstanding shares as of Oct. 11.

“We are pleased and gratified by the strong support we have received from our stockholders, with more than 99 percent of the voting shares voting in support of the transaction," CEO Sanjay Jha said in a released statement. "We look forward to working with Google to realize the significant value this combination will bring to our stockholders and all the new opportunities it will provide our dedicated employees, customers, and partners.”

Google has said it intends to continue to run Motorola as a separate company. The deal, worth some $12.5 billion, is expected to close late this year or in early 2012.

Source: Motorola

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2 years ago

Hands-on with the ZTE Warp

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With pre-paid cell phones becoming increasingly more popular, it should come as no suprise to see manufacturers developing devices to run on prepaid carriers. ZTE recently launched the ZTE Warp, a 4.3-inch Android 2.3.5 powered handset that runs on the Boost Mobile network.  Powered by a 1GHz processor, the overall feel of the software is quite smooth, and very little lag can be noticed. Many of us prefer vanilla Android, and that is exactly what they have given us.

Of course the device contains the usual bloatware that we are used to seeing so frequently now-a-days, but aside from that the device is great. The 5MP shooter has an LED flash accompanying it, and the overall picture quality is pretty impressive. So, whether in the market to replace an old phone, or looking to add a second line without contract, this device is one you will definitely want to check out. Priced at only $199 (sorry for the $249 mention in the video!) and $55 a month for unlimited everything, this sure is a tempting purchase. Be sure to hit the break for a few more pictures, and a quick video tour!

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