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2 years ago

Screen burn-in concerns, upside down photos [From the Forums]

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Thursday again, and time for another Android Central podcast -- after todays earnings call we'll have just that more to talk about. As we gear up for it, why don't you all take a stroll through the Android Central forums, just make sure you come back in time for the podcast.. mmkay?

If you're not already a member of the Android Central forums, you can register your account today.

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2 years ago

Larry Page on the Android 'patent situation'

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Google was asked about the "patent situation" during Thursday's second-quarter earnings call. The "situation," of course, is that Google recently lost a bid for a major bunch of patents -- and lost to a consortium including many of its main competitors in the mobile space. Meanwhile, developers are having to fight (or pay off) patent trolls, and we're seeing more licensing deals being made between Android OEMs and Google competitors.

Here's what Page had to say:

"Android's really on a tear. I mentioned there are over 550,000 new Android activations. There's over 400 such devices. Thirty-nine OEMs. Two-hundred-and-thirty-one carriers in 123 countries, and over 78 Open Handset Allience partners, and that velocity's only increasing.

"Now, of course, despite the efforts of some of our competitors, there hasn't been any slowdown in any of those things. And, you know, partners and developers are continuing to expand the Android ecosystem.

"And I should say, of course, we're really committed to Android and continue to support that platform and ecosystem, and do it in a cost-effective manner."

See also: Editorial: How long can Google and Android afford to remain silent on patents?

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2 years ago

Android Market now has more than a quarter-million applications

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Just 48 hours since Google announced a major update to the Android Market, Susan Wojcicki, senior vice president of advertising, announced during today's second-quarter earnings call that the Android Market now has more than 250,000 applications, with more than 6 billion downloads.

By comparison, BlackBerry's App World just passed the 1 billion mark.

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2 years ago

Android now seeing 550,000 activations every day, Larry Page says

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You read that right. Today, during Google's second-quarter earnings call, CEO Larry Page announced that some 550,000 devices are being activated every day.

That's about 382 devices being activated every minute, or 3.85 million every week.

That's a lot of devices.

Put it into perspective: On June 28, Android's Andy Rubin tweeted that a half-million devices were being activated daily. At Google IO in May, it was 400,000 devices a day.

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2 years ago

Google+ private beta has more than 10 million members

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Google CEO Larry Page just dropped a few numbers on the new Google+ social network, which technically is still in a semi-private beta.

"The Growth on Google+ has been great," Page said during Thursday's second-quarter earnings call. He explained:

  • More than 10 million people on Google+
  • More than 1 billion items shared and received in a single day.
  • The +1 button is being served more than 2.3 billion times a day.

Still a way to go to hit Facebook's 750 million members. But for private beta, that ain't too shabby.

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2 years ago

Google's Q2 revenue up 32 percent over Q2 2010

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Google just announced its Q2 2011 earnings. And, guess what -- they're up. Up some 32 percent over Q2 2010, to be exact. The big strokes:

  • Total revenue was at a record $9.03 billion, a 32 percent increase over the $6.82 billion earned for the second three months of 2010.
  • GAAP net income was $2.51 billion, up from $1.84 billion in Q2 2010.
  • Operating income was $2.88 billion, or 32 percent of total revenue, up from $2.37 billion for Q2 2010.
  • Cash (and cash equivalents and marketable securities) were $39.1 billion.
  • Google's employee total rose to 28,768 as of June 30, 211, up from 26,316 as of March 31, 2011. Net growth was 450 FTE.

That's the big stuff. Hit the source link if you really need more. We're staying tuned for the Q&A, which on occasion can get juicy.

Source: Google

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2 years ago

Hands-on with wireless charging for the HTC ThunderBolt with the Energizer Inductive Charging Pad

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If you've got an HTC ThunderBolt on Verizon, chances are you spend a lot of time charging the thing. I will never again be plugging in my ThunderBolt, however. Picked up Verizon's wireless charging battery cover for it recently and paired it up with an inductive charging pad -- it uses that newfangled Qi charging system -- and couldn't be happier.

Here's how it works: You pop the wireless charging cover onto the ThunderBolt. It looks nearly identical to the stock cover -- same soft-touch coating and HTC logo, though it is just a tad bigger. Not nearly as big as the ThunderBolt's extended battery, but you will notice a very slight bulge.

Then there's the Energizer Inductive Charging Pad. It's just as simple. Plug the AC adapter into the wall, then put the phone on top of it. It's that easy. But probably the best thing about it are the Qi logos, which help you properly position the phones for charging. You really don't have to think about it at all. And as an added bonus, there's a USB port on the back of the pad, so you can plug in a third device without taking up an extra wall plug. Nice.

We're using the ThunderBolt here, but Verizon has wireless charging backs for the Droid 3, Revolution and Droid Charge as well, and there are third-party backs for some other devices, too.

We've got video and a couple more pictures after the break.

More: Verizon; Energizer

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2 years ago

Google+ app updated in Android Market, brings UI changes, new features, and bug fixes

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The Google+ app has just received a pretty major update that brings bug fixes, some UI changes, and new features to Googles new social media venture.  From the changelog in the Android Market:

  • Customize the main stream view to show streams from individual circles
  • Fixed some issues encountered by users with the Swype keyboard
  • Set permissions for who can start a huddle with you (Anyone, Your Circles, Extended Circles)
  • If someone you've never huddled with before invites you to a group huddle, you can now dismiss the invitation
  • New UI allows adding multiple people or entire circles to a huddle
  • Set photo as wallpaper
  • Performance improvements and bug fixes throughout the app

This addresses the biggest gripes I've been hearing about the mobile app -- a way to add entire circles to a huddle, and a way to customize which circles are visible in your main stream.  I'm sure the Google+ team is still hard at work and things will only get better.  If you don't have your Google+ invitation yet, be sure to hit the forums and sing out -- invites seem to be wide open.  Download links for the Market are after the break.

If you don't have an Android phone, you don't have a Google+ app. 

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2 years ago

Android Quick App: dealnews

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If any of you are as gung-ho about saving money as I am, I'm sure you've heard about dealnews. Their slogan is "Where every day is Black Friday" and as such, they 're constantly trying to give you the biggest and best discounts on anything they can find. Fortunately, for the bargain hunters on-the-go, they've just unveiled their latest offering, the dealnews Android app.

The dealnews app is a fully-featured, mobile dealnews experience. There are four tabs up at the top of the screen: Deals, Saved, Find, and More, respectively. Deals is where the action happens, obviously. Saved contains all of your saved deals, Find is a general product search, and More gives you four more options to find discounts and deals.

When you find yourself on the More tab, you're greeted with Twitter, Facebook, mydealnews, and their Black Friday App as options. Clicking on either Twitter or Facebook opens up a wrapped version of their mobile Twitter and Facebook feeds, respectively, without ever leaving the app or asking you to login. Pressing the back button on your phone brings you back to the app proper.

Mydealnews takes you to a non-mobile version of the dealnews website called mydealnews (big surprise!). It's populated with the standard information about dealnews and what they do and is essentially trying to get you to subscribe/register/join their website so you can have tailored deal suggestions sent to you. While back on the More screen, if you press the Black Friday App link, you're taken to the Android Market install page for the Black Friday App. As of now, too early to be useful, but definitely worth nothing once November rolls around.

Moving off of the top-most menu, you'll see there's categories of products, ranging from Newest and Hottest to Computers, Electronics, and even Office & Supplies. Clicking on any specific category hones your list of items down to that particular thing. At first I couldn't tell if it ended at electronics (you'll notice it cuts off the word a few letters in), but after a couple of attempts, I discovered you can scroll left and right on the category menu, exposing a whole plethora of things to choose from. It's intuitive once you notice it, but I would have liked something more indicative than a word being cut off in the middle.

You can also force refresh the deals via the menu button. The menu button brings up that option as well as your sole way of getting to the (as of now) meager settings menu. Once you find yourself on the settings menu, you'll notice your only two choices are Twitter and Facebook, and the app only gives you the option of automatically posting deals you've found to those two accounts.

Something else I would have liked to have seen is support for landscape mode. Even when you rotate your phone, the app is locked into portrait, which isn't terrible, but is definitely limiting, especially if you want to see more categories to choose from without having to scroll incessantly.

Overall though, the dealnews app is a strong first push into getting an app out there that isn't seasonal. While there's definitely room for improvement, it's free and still fresh (as of today), so I'm sure it'll mature as time goes on. If you're interested in bargains, consider checking it out, as it's one I wouldn't want to go without.

Oodles of pictures and download links are after the break.

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2 years ago

Motorola XT860 4G gets official on Bell

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Having been rumored for a while, Bell today has finally made the news official. They will indeed be bringing the Motorola XT860 4G to Canada. Most will know the device from its more commonly used name -- the Motorola Droid 3 but since Verizon has a lock on the Droid name, it can't be used. No pricing details have been revealed and the only time frame given is "this summer" however -- previous rumors suggest an August launch date for the device.

Source: CNW

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