Headlines

11 months ago

HTC bosses hint at future tablet and wearable devices

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Chairwoman Cher Wang​ promises 'disruptive' tablet; CEO Peter Chou says wearables are 'a critical segment for us'

In an extensive joint interview with the Financial Times, HTC CEO Peter Chou and Chairwoman Cher Wang offered some fresh insight into the troubled smartphone maker's future plans — including hints at entries into new product categories.

The pair confirmed that Wang would be stepping up her day-to-day duties at the company, and taking on some of Chou's "sales, marketing and supplier relationships" duties, allowing him to focus on "innovation" and the product portfolio. The move will see the HTC chairwoman working six days a week at the company, as opposed to two previously, the FT reports, as HTC aims to work its way out of its current slump.

As far as future products are concerned, the HTC bosses hinted at a return to the tablet market, as well as a possible foray into the world of wearables. Chou reportedly mentions that HTC worked on a smartwatch-type device with Microsoft "several years ago," but dismissed the current crop of wearables: “It has to meet a need, otherwise if it’s just a gimmick or concept, it’s not for people’s day-to-day lives. That is an opportunity for us.” Nevertheless, he describes wearables as "a critical segment for us," adding “it matches what we do today as a mobile experience overall. That is one area we are excited about.”

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11 months ago

Dell Venue 7 and 8 tablets now available online, starting at $150

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Powered by Clover Trail+ processors, these are very interesting budget tablets

Traditional PC maker Dell has released two new Android tablets, and starting today at their web shopping portal you can pick up the Dell Venue 7 for $150, or the Dell Venue 8 for $180.

Other than the screen size, the tablets are identical. Under the hood you have an Intel ATOM Z2580 processor, which is the high-end Clover Trail+ version that features Hyperthreading and VTx technology. This is paired with 2GB of RAM, and Intel HD graphics adapter, support for 802.11 b/g/n wireless and Bluetooth 4.0. The screen resolution is a mild 1200 x 800 on both the 7-inch Venue 7 and 8-inch Venue 8, and both tablets will ship with Android 4.2.2.

On paper, they appear to be solid consumer-grade offerings, which should have excellent battery life thanks to the Intel CPU. We've ordered one, and we'll have a look ourselves. At $150, it's certainly worth a good long look as the holiday shopping season approaches.

For more details and ordering information, see the source links.

Source: Dell. Thanks, Heath!

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11 months ago

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7-inch now shipping

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Prices start at $229 with 'special offers,' $244 without

Amazon's next-generation Kindle Fire HDX has launches today, and the 7-inch tablet is available right now from Amazon.com. The new Kindle Fire packs a speedy Snapdragon 800 processor and a 1920x1200-resolution display into a 9mm body weighing 303g, making it highly competitive in terms of specs. And the tablet's pricing is equally so, starting at $229 for 16GB "with special offers" — which means ads on your lock screen. If you want to go ad-free you'll pay $244 for 16GB. Adding $100 to that price gets you either the Verizon or AT&T LTE-capable models; add another $40 for 32GB of storage, or $80 for 64GB.

The tablet is running Amazon's latest Android-based FireOS 3.0 "Mojito" OS, which our own Jerry Hildenbrand found to be fast and responsive in his recent hands-on feature. Obviously this means you'll be tied into Amazon's content ecosystem, as opposed to Google Play — though presumably that's why you're looking at an Amazon tablet to begin with.

For more on the Kindle Fire HDX, check out our hands-on preview. If you're looking to pick one up, you'll find a link down below. Next stop for the 7-inch HDX is the UK on Nov. 13, then Canada on Nov. 26.

Buy: Kindle Fire HDX 7-inch on Amazon.com

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11 months ago

LG G Pad 8.3 available at BestBuy.com today, in stores Nov. 3

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Sleek LG G Pad 8.3 tablet costs $349, available in two colors

LG today announced that its new G Pad 8.3 tablet is available now from BestBuy.com for $349. It'll be available in stores starting Nov. 3.

The 8.3-inch tablet, as we found in our initial hands-on at IFA in Berlin and in a couple weeks' worth of more recent use, is one hell of a tablet, with a sleek design, great display (8.3 inches at 1920x1200), running Android 4.2.2 and powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor. 

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11 months ago

Kindle Fire HDX now up for pre-order in the U.K. and Canada

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Amazon's latest launches starting November 13 in Britain, November 26 in Canada

Amazon's latest effort in the tablet space, the Kindle Fire HDX, is now available to pre-order in the U.K. and Canada for shipping in mid to late November. Both the 7-inch and the 8.9-inch versions are to be available in the full range of storage sizes, though WiFi only appears to be it in Canada. In the U.K. Amazon will be selling a 4G LTE version of the HDX in partnership with Vodafone, which will be available from November 27. The 8.9-inch HDX with LTE won't be available until mid-December. 

Prices start at £199/$254 for the 7-inch HDX and £329/$399 for the 8.9-inch version. Additionally, both countries are accepting pre-orders for the new 7-inch Kindle Fire HD, which will begin shipping on October 24. Prices for these start at £119/$149. For more information and to pre-order, hit up the relevant source links below. 

More: Hands-on with the 7-inch Kindle Fire HDX

Source: Amazon (U.K.), (Canada)

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11 months ago

Kindle Fire HDX 7-inch torn down, exposing tablet parts within

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Amazon's latest and greatest scores pretty poorly for reparability 

While we're well aware by now of what specs lie within the new 7-inch Amazon Kindle Fire HDX, for the hardware nerds among us actually seeing those parts brings a warm sense of satisfaction. The folks at iFixit have done their thing, taken apart the new tablet and scored it for its repairability. And that's where things go sour for the HDX. 

The Snapdragon 800 chip, the 2GB of RAM and all those other goodies are all there for the world to see, but the problems, at least if you break something, lie within the construction. The battery is well glued in beneath an almost impossible to replace motherboard, which immediately spells disaster for wannabe fixers. 

Positive points are few, but iFixit does note that the volume buttons, microphone and headphone jack are all individual pieces, meaning replacements of these is much easier than on previous models. But, all in all it's a low scoring outing for the Kindle Fire HDX, receiving a 3/10 for reparability. The worst score of any Kindle device to date. 

To see more glorious internal shots and details on the repairing nightmare, be sure to visit the source link below. 

Source: iFixit

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11 months ago

ASUS Transformer Pad TF701T goes on sale in the UK on October 21

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ASUS' latest tablet/laptop hybrid comes packing the specs, yours for £429.99

Initially announced back at IFA 2013 in Berlin, UK availability has finally been confirmed for the latest in the ASUS Transformer Pad line of devices. The catchily named TF701T comes with the now traditional keyboard dock included, and will go on sale in the UK via Amazon and eBuyer on October 21 for £429.99. 

While the name may not capture the imagination, this latest Transformer Pad comes packing in the specs department. Some recent tablet offerings from ASUS have been lacking a little in the display department, but all that goes away with the TF701T. It houses a 2560x1600 resolution 10.1-inch IPS display that looks pretty darn nice. Underneath, NVIDIA's latest Tegra 4 chip pushes everything along backed up by 2GB of RAM. On-board storage is a respectible 32GB and the package also has both micro and full size SD card slots. A USB 3.0 port, HDMI out capable of driving a 4K display and a 5MP/1.2MP rear and front camera combination completes most of the important specs. 

Of course, as with previous Transformer devices from ASUS, the dock also houses extra battery power for the ensemble. A 31Wh battery in the tablet and a 16Wh in the dock combines for a claimed 13 hour and 4 hour split on battery life, so around 17 hours claimed when used together. 

More: Hands on with the ASUS Transformer Pad TF701T

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11 months ago

LG G Pad 8.3 UK and Irish availability detailed

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£260 price, launching 'in the run up to Christmas'

LG has announced its launch UK and Ireland plans for the new G Pad 8.3, which will see the Korean manufacturer bringing its latest tablet to the British Isles in time for the holidays. A post on LG's official UK blog also reveals that the tablet will sell for £260 through a partnership with retail distributor Micro-P. In Ireland it'll be sold exclusively through Harvey Norman from the end of October, and LG says it plans to launch the tablet in 30 more markets by the end of the year.

The G Pad is LG's first entry into the tablet market for more than two years, featuring an 8.3-inch 1080p IPS display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, topped off with LG's own software sprinkles. It'll compete with the cheaper 7-inch Nexus 7, but LG will be hoping the G Pad's larger display, faster CPU and colorful software will set it apart from Google's tablet.

For more on the device, check out our hands-on preview from IFA 2013, linked below.

More: Hands-on with the LG G Pad 8.3

Source: LG UK

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11 months ago

Hands-on with the 7-inch Amazon Kindle Fire HDX

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The delivery man was working on a Saturday and delivered our 7-inch Kindle Fire HDX this afternoon, and we wanted to make sure you fine folks had a chance to see a quick peek of it.

The new 7-inch Kindle Fire HDX is extremely thin and light (9mm and 303g, respectively) and has an incredible 323ppi 1900 x 1200 pixel screen. Under the hood is a quad-core Snapdragon 800 CPU clocked at 2.2GHz, and paired with 2GB of RAM the new Mojito UI absolutely flies. 

A few quick first impressions left us feeling good about what we are seeing here. The package is very well built and assembled, with a mostly soft-touch backing (it almost feels rubberized) and the few buttons are solid and functional. The screen is excellent, as are the dual stereo speakers and Dolby audio system. Of course, we'll know more about things like battery life and wireless performance after a bit of use.

I'm an unapologetic Kindle Fire user. I've found that when it comes to consuming the content I want to consume, Amazon and their hardware deliver it better than anyone else out there, and it's the tablet that sits on my nightstand and puts me to bed every night. Having said that — and yes, I realize it's likely an unpopular opinion — I'm the perfect person to review the latest and greatest Amazon has to offer.

I'll be doing just that, and I've already filled our 16GB unit with some books from my library, signed into my Amazon cloud and migrated my Amazon apps and settings from my older Kindle to the newer one. Look for further thoughts throughout the week, with a full review soon. 

In the meantime, there's a short video and some pictures after the break.

Kindle Fire HDX 7-inch at Amazon

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11 months ago

Gameloft optimizes two titles and preloads them on the Archos Gamepad2

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Asphalt 8: Airborne and Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour optimized to work with the dedicated gaming controls

App publisher Gameloft has sent out a memo to let us all know that they have two special titles for folks buying the Archos Gamepad 2Asphalt 8: Airborne and Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour have both been optimized for the Gamepad 2 controls, and will be bundled on the tablet as part of the original firmware.

The applications have been tweaked to work with the new tablet's dedicated gaming buttons, and as we've seen on devices like the Nvidia Shield, this can make for a world of difference and deliver games that are more fun to play. 

Users will still have the option of installing the original versions from Google Play, but we can't imagine why anyone would want to replace the versions built specifically for the hardware with more generic options. We'll have the answers at the end of the month when the tablet slash gaming console goes up for sale. Hit the break for the deliciously short and succinct press release.

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11 months ago

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 - 2014 edition launches in the U.S.

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Prices for Samsung's new stylus-enabled tablet start at $549.99

Right on schedule, the high-end, hyphenated Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 - 2014 edition is now available for sale in the U.S. The Wifi-only version of the new Note 10.1 launches today in 16 and 32-gigabyte models for $549.99 and $599.99 respectively. The 32GB version comes in white and black colors, while some online retailers only have the 16GB model in white.

On all the Wifi-only models you'll get Samsung's latest Exynos 5 Octa CPU, 3GB of RAM, an eye-popping 2560x1600-resolution display and the full range of "S Pen" stylus features found on the Galaxy Note 3. Retail partners or the U.S. launch include Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile, BestBuy.com, Amazon, PC Richard's, Fry's, Tiger Direct, Walmart and Samsung.com.

Samsung's latest Android tablet isn't cheap, so you'll want to hit up our full Galaxy Note 10.1 - 2014 edition review to see if it's for you.

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11 months ago

Verizon launches Samsung Galaxy Note 3 + Gear

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$299.99 on-contract for the Note 3, $299.99 outright for the Gear

Verizon Wireless subscribers, today's the day you can pick up Samsung's latest handset on your carrier of choice. The Galaxy Note 3 goes on sale today on Verizon, along with the Galaxy Gear companion smartwatch. The Verizon Note 3 is available in black and white colors for $299.99 on a standard two-year contract, and the carrier is also offering the Note and Gear at the same price point. If you're looking to buy a Verizon Galaxy Note 3 outright, you'll pay $699.99.

Verizon is the last major U.S. operator to get the Note 3 — T-Mobile, Sprint and AT&T launched the big-screened phone last week, while the device arrived on U.S. Cellular yesterday. If you're picking up a Verizon Note 3 (or Galaxy Gear) today, hit the comments and make yourself known!

More: Galaxy Note 3 review; Galaxy Gear initial review

Source: Verizon (Note 3), (Galaxy Gear)

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11 months ago

Of course there's a Hello Kitty Galaxy Tab 3

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Looking for an entry-level tablet with added Japanese cartoon feline? Samsung has you covered with the the new Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 Hello Kitty edition. Plastered front and back with Kitty's image — yes, the home button is now a Hello Kitty button — the device is otherwise identical to the Wifi-only Tab 3 unveiled earlier in the year. However Samsung's TouchWiz UI does appear to have been augmented with Hello Kitty-style icons and wallpapers, so there's that.

The Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 Hello Kitty edition is the perfect companion for your Hello Kitty Galaxy smartphone, and it'll reportedly arrive in the next three weeks or so, priced at €229. Check past the break for a quick hands-on video.

Also see: Hello Kitty HTC Butterfly S, Hello Kitty Samsung Galaxy Y

Source: MobileGeeks; via: SamMobile

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11 months ago

Archos GamePad 2 official: Quad-core CPU, 7-inch display, bundled games

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Second-gen gaming tablet from Archos

Hot on the heels of a retailer leak last week, Archos has today officially announced the GamePad 2 — its second attempt at an Android-powered handheld gaming device. Like its predecessor, the new GamePad features a 7-inch display, but the resolution's been upped to 1280x800 pixels. Similarly, it's now packing a 1.6GHz quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM, which should improve performance and multitasking capabilities. Storage-wise, you're looking at 16 and 32GB options with microSD support for up to 64GB cards. Apps to SD support is included too, allowing you to push some apps to external storage. And it's running Android 4.2 Jelly Bean with the full complement of Google apps.

Archos is also touting a new version of its Game Mapping tool, which lets gamers map any area of the screen to one of the physical buttons, allowing compatibility even with games that don't natively support hardware controls. And to sweeten the deal it's throwing in full complete versions of Gameloft's Asphalt 8: Airborne and Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour, fully optimized for use with gamepad controls.

The Archos GamePad 2 will be available from the end of the month, priced at €179.99.

Source: Archos

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11 months ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 arrives on Sprint on October 11

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7-inch, LTE-capable tablet coming to Sprint this Friday for $49 on a two-year plan

Samsung has announced that the 7-inch Galaxy Tab 3 will be making its way to Sprint from this Friday, Oct 11. Priced at $49 on a two-year plan, the Tab 3 7.0 runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean on a 7-inch, 1024x600-resolution display. There's also a 3-megapixel rear camera and 1.3-megapixel front-facer, and if Sprint's Tab 3 is anything like the Wifi-only version, it should be powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU with 1GB of RAM. (No specific internals are mentioned in today's press release.) Existing Sprint customers can add data for a Tab 3 to their accounts for an additional monthly fee starting at $5 plus tax.

As a TouchWiz tablet, Sprint's Tab 3 features some of the headline features from Samsung's smartphones, including the WatchON TV app, which uses a built-in IR blaster, and Group Play for multimedia sharing. The tablet will go on sale this Friday through Sprint's brick-and-mortar stores as well as online and telesales channels. At first it'll be available in white, with a black version to follow in time for the holidays.

More: Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 series review

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