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3 years ago

Early Galaxy S3 Android 4.1.2 firmware leaks, multi-view feature in tow

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It's been rumored previously, and now there's more evidence to suggest that the Samsung Galaxy S3 will be getting the "multi-view" feature from the Note 2 in its upcoming Android 4.1.2 update. An early, leaked version of the ROM obtained by SamMobile also adds many other Note 2 features, including smart rotation, Paper Artist, a new gallery app and the Note 2's SwiftKey-powered keyboard.

For the uninitiated, multi-window allows you to split the screen between two full-fledged Android apps by long-pressing the back key. It wasn't quite ready for the Galaxy Note 2's launch, but was added in an over-the-air update few days later.

Today's leaked firmware is a pre-rooted testing build that's been cobbled together based on a system dump, so all the usual warnings apply. As it's not officially signed by Samsung, flashing the firmware will increase your custom binary counter, too. And it's for the international 3G S3 only (GT-i9300), so don't try flashing it on any other model.

The Galaxy S3 isn't the only device rumored to be getting multi-view. There've been whispers in the past few weeks suggesting that the original Galaxy Note (international version, GT-N7000) could end up with some of its big brother's showcase features, in addition to the new TouchWiz Nature UX -- as part of its Android 4.1.2 update.

There's no official timeframe for the Galaxy S3 to receive Android 4.1.2, but SamMobile seems to think the company's aiming for a December release on international models.

Source: SamMobile

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3 years ago

AT&T LTE lights up Twin Cities

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In addition to a handful of new LTE markets yesterday, AT&T has flipped the switch on LTE coverage in the Twin Cities, Minnesota today. AT&T took the announcement as an opportunity to pimp out some of their high-speed Android devices, such as the Sony Xperia TL, LG Optimus G, and Samsung Galaxy S3

Also, our Fearless Leader, Phil, is reporting that his hometown of Pensacola, Florida is starting to get some LTE lovin'. Anyone else notice new AT&T LTE in their area? Who's still waiting for 4G coverage?

Source: AT&T

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3 years ago

Google launches global augmented reality game Ingress, invite-only for now

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Google's Niantic Labs has launched Ingress, a new worldwide augmented reality game that will be primarily played with your mobile device. Back in September, they released an app called Field Trip, which aims to provide relevant information as you walk or drive around. Ingress is far more ambitious and involved than Field Trip.

It is a game that can be played by anyone with the app and will take quite a while. Not too much is known about the game, but what we do know is drawn from the vague video produced by Google above. It involves two groups, the Resistance, and the Enlightened. One group pushes back against 'the power' while the other seeks to use it to their advantage. 

A major aspect of the game will be using your phone while you're out and about, collecting power by walking certain routes or analyzing landmarks.

This sounds pretty interesting and ambitious. It's invite-only for now and Android-only for now, but Google plans to be on multiple platforms because they want as many players as possible.

To request an invite, hit up the source link, which is the main landing page for Ingress. If you're one of the lucky ones with an invite, there is also a link to the app in the Google Play Store.

Source: Ingress; via All Things D

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3 years ago

Amazon opens Cloud Drive to Japanese users

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Amazon this morning announced that its users in Japan now have access to its Cloud Drive service.

The company is inviting users to store their files on the Amazon cloud and is dangling 5 gigabytes of space for free. Extra space of 20 gigabytes cost ¥800 per year, similar to the $10 charged in the U.S.

The company first released a desktop app for cloud storage in May this year, and followed up with a photo app for Android devices at the start of this month.

Besides tying in all your devices, the idea is also for its Android-based Kindle Fire and Fire HD devices to be hooked up to your files, especially photos, so you can show your colleagues yet another picture of your adorable puppy.

The Cloud Drive Photos app is free in the Google Play Store and Amazon Appstore.

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3 years ago

Android dominates China with 90% market share

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A recent smartphone platform study of China shows that Android is absolutely dominating the landscape with 90.1% market share. Over the last quarter, iOS dropped from 6% to 4.2%, though keep in mind that they still didn't have the iPhone 5. Apparently the survey skipped knock-off devices, which means the Android share might actually be higher, though there also may be plenty of iPhones getting smuggled into China that aren't accounted for. The average selling price of Android handsets is down from $251 to $223 this quarter.

Even if Google's participation in the Android device market in China is limited, there are plenty of manufacturers in the area that are fleshing out their own Android variants to address local needs. Sure, that doesn't always work out, but otherwise, it seems like most manufacturers are doing what's to be expected of any open source project: hack away at it and make it their own. 

Any Chinese readers in the house? Is Android adoption as prevalent as this study suggests, or is the iPhone smuggling market big enough that the research doesn't do iOS justice? Is there room for a significantly competing platform in China? 

Via: TNW

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3 years ago

Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch ships today, 4G version next week

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Amazon has announced that their new tablet, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch (see our Hands-On), starts shipping today. This is the WiFi-only version, with the LTE option set to ship next week.

In case you've forgotten the Amazon event back in September, the Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch boasts:

  • 16GB / 32GB storage options
  • 1920 x 1200 screen (254 ppi)
  • 1.5GHz dual-core processor
  • 9.4 x 7.31 x .34 inches
  • Dual-band, dual-antenna WiFi
  • Dolby audio and dual stereo speakers

The Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch comes in a few different varieties:

  • 16GB with Special Offers - $299
  • 16GB without Special Offers - $314
  • 32GB with Special Offers - $369
  • 32GB without Special Offers - $384

Currently, it can only be purchased from Amazon's Kindle Fire HD page, but will be available in Best Buy stores starting tomorrow, and at Radioshack and Staples in the coming weeks.

The LTE option will ship starting on November 20th for $499.

The tablet race has certainly gotten interesting this past year. Do you plan to pick up a Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch? Waiting for the LTE version? Head over to our Amazon Kindle Fire HD Forum and let us know!

Source: Amazon

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3 years ago

Vodafone Red Hot offers a new phone every 12 months, but there's a catch

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Vodafone UK has kicked off a new price plan which allows customers to get a new phone every 12 months, with a 2GB monthly data allowance and unlimited calls and texts. Vodafone Red is the carrier's latest effort to stand out in an increasingly competitive market, flanked by the 4G-toting EE and the unlimited data-offering Three.

But there's a catch -- Vodafone Red Hot customers won't actually own their handsets, they'll lease their phones from the carrier, and pay a hefty fee if they're returned in a damaged or "modified" state when the contract comes up for renewal.

Right now Red Hot is limited to the iPhone 5 and Samsung's Galaxy S3 and Note 2. Pricing breaks down as follows for a 12-month contract --

  • Samsung GALAXY S3 16GB - £47 per month
  • Samsung GALAXY S3 32GB - £52 per month, £29 up-front fee
  • Samsung GALAXY Note 2 - £52 per month

So the main benefit here is you're not paying anywhere near as high an up-front cost to get your hands on these devices. Nevertheless, we'd be a little wary of any contract that says we're just keeping our phone warm for the carrier, rather than legally owning it.

More: Vodafone UK

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3 years ago

XCom Global now offers Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 rentals

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Forget, for the moment, that the Nexus 7 probably is the most successful Android tablet to date, and that you can pick one up for just $199. And that if you travel, say, to Europe, there's a better than average chance that you'll be taking your tablet with you. But let's say you left yours at home for whatever reason -- or you've yet to purchase one, or maybe you want to give the Nexus 10 a shot. XCom Global, the company that can hook you up with Mifi service in some 170 countries worldwide, is now offering Nexus 7 rentals for $1 a day. That's an introductory price, and costs will bump up to $2 a day for the Nexus 7 and $3 a day for the Nexus 10.

That, of course, is added on to whatever you're paying XCom for data as well. Full presser's after the break.

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3 years ago

OnLive added to LG Smart TV with Google TV

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OnLive this morning announced that as of today it's being integrated into the Google TV build on the LG G2 Smart TV. Updates should be delivered over the air today, and it'll be preinstalled on all future LG Google TVs.

The LG G2 comes in a couple of flavors -- a 47-inch monitor for $1,699, and a 54.6-inch set at $2,299.

The OnLive gaming service also is preinstalled on the Vizio CoStar Google TV box.

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3 years ago

Top threads from the Droid DNA forums

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I've been camped out in our Verizon Droid DNA forums for the better part of the last two days, and the discussion is simply incredible. Here are a few threads you must be sure to check out:

And that's just for starters. Have a question about the Droid DNA? Register for your Mobile Nations Passport and come join us in the forums!

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3 years ago

Contest: Win an AT&T HTC One X+

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The HTC One X+ is one sweet machine. Check out Alex's awesome review of the unlocked version, you'll see what I mean. It takes everything we love about the original One X, cranks it to 11, and quadruples the storage so power-users have a place for their stuff. Let's recap the highlights.

  • It's the first phone to match Jelly Bean with the Tegra 3 (the beefy 1.7GHz version), which means you not only get the battery sipping fifth companion-core to conserve battery when it can, but you get all the goodness that comes with the TegraZone -- absolutely awesome games. Console quality even. 
  •  It has HTC Sense 4+ on board. I know, plenty of folks will moan and turn their nose up, but Sense 4+ offers a whole lot of functionality that looks good. With the ImageSense chip, the camera alone makes Sense 4+ and incredible way to enjoy your smartphone. And if you don't find Sense 4+ a feature worth keeping, you know it will be easy to change. 
  • There's 64GB of on-board storage. And it's storage has none of that goofy partitioning for apps and media, so you're free to use the entire space any way you like. This is a big deal.

  • It looks really, really cool with the exclusive carbon black finish. There's nothing wrong with looking good.

  • You can pick one up from AT&T today for $199 and a new agreement.

Yeah, the bullet points look really nice. Know what's even nicer? Winning one from AT&T and Android Central. It's up to you to get the service, but we've got the phone to give away to one lucky winner. 

Head into the Android contest forums. Read the rules. Enter the contest. Since I can't win, I'll wish everyone good luck!

Enter to win an AT&T HTC One X+

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3 years ago

TalkTalk offering up a free Nexus 7 with four Android smartphone deals

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TalkTalk are getting into the Christmas spirit -- or feeling rather generous -- as they have today announced that from Nov. 20 they'll be giving away a free Nexus 7 tablet with a selection of smartphone deals.

There are four Android devices on offer and although three of them are not amazingly high-end, they will soon have the LG Nexus 4, which will be flying off the shelves. As you'll see after the break, TalkTalk are offering options for small, medium and heavy users, ensuring they have some goodness for everyone. With the Nexus 7 being thrown in for good measure, I suspect this deal could be fairly popular.

You can catch the pricing deals along with the press release after the break:

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3 years ago

First Nexus 4 orders from EU Google Play Store starting to arrive

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The Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 Play Store launch was more than a little chaotic, with server errors and other glitches preventing some folks from getting orders in. However, if you were one of the lucky few to be able to order a Nexus 4 in Europe, you can expect your phone to arrive in the next few days. The first of ours showed up just a few minutes ago, and we're sure other early birds will be receiving Nexus-shaped parcels in the next few hours.

Anyone else seeing Nexus 4 orders arriving this morning? Shout out in the comments!

More: LG Nexus 4 review

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3 years ago

Morning news roundup: November 15, 2012

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3 years ago

Samsung now manufacturing 10 nanometer 64GB flash storage chips

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The times, they are a changin'. Devices are getting thinner and thinner, meaning space between the battery and screen is a premium. Samsung has announced that its come to a new milestone in its flash memory division, dropping down to a 10nm (nanometer)-class manufacturing process for 64GB chips. That doesn't really mean much on the face of it, but the end result is a chip that's physically 20-percent smaller, and has nearly double the performance in terms of IOPS (input/output per second) at 2,000 write and 5,000 read. These new chips have sequential read and write speeds of 260MB/s and 50MB/s, respectively, which is over 10 times faster than an external Class 10 SDcard.

That's some serious performance improvements over external storage, and at the capacities that these chips are available in, you're not exactly making any compromises. Also remember that Samsung manufactures these components for more than just their own devices. Many different manufacturers utilize Samsung for device components, so we'll hopefully start seeing these new, faster chips in phones and tablets across the board soon.

Source: Samsung; Via: Engadget

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