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4 years ago

Facebook Messenger app updated with texting support*

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You read that correctly - starting today, Facebook Messenger 2.0 will support sending text messages. However, that asterisk in the title denotes that there's a catch. Initially, only the HTC EVO 3D, HTC One X, LG Optimus Black, LG Optimus Hub, Samsung Galaxy Ace, Samsung Galaxy Nexus, Samsung Galaxy S3, and Samsung Galaxy Y will support texting from the app. Facebook promises that more devices will be supported over the next few weeks.

Besides redesigning your messages inbox look like a SMS app, Facebook Messenger lets you swipe your finger to the left anywhere in the app to see who's available, and from there you can send a message. You can also put the friends you message most to the top through Favorites so they’re easily accessible.

Along with the updates coming to Facebook Messenger, the main Facebook app is getting an update today as well. It will receive the same SMS-style look for your messages and there will be an icon in the upper-right of your News Feed that shows who's available to chat. In addition, Facebook says that the new app has been made more secure and they've ironed out some bugs with push notifications and multi-photo uploads.

Source: Facebook

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4 years ago

Android-powered Cube U9GT5 tablet boasts Retina-quality display

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A new tablet is launching soon in China that not only claims to match the resolution of the new iPad's Retina display, but it might be able to do it for under 200 euros (though no price or release date was announced). The Cube U9GT5 runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and is powered by a dual-core 1.6 GHz Cortex A9 processor with 1 GB of RAM. The 9.7-inch display clocks in at 2048 x 1536, or 264 pixels per inch, which is identical to Apple's latest tablet. Of course, there's a lot more than pixel density to take into account, but sure gives this tablet a solid selling point to lean on. 

It's hard to really tell how much better these displays are than what we're used to, but that didn't stop the manufacturer from posting a few comparison videos and images.

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4 years ago

SoundCloud for Android updated with fresh editing tools

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The SoundCloud app for Android now includes clipping, recording pause, and fade-in/fade-out editing options. Right now, the app is still more about flipping through the most recently-posted tunes, but these are certainly welcome tools for those looking to do some light editing before posting anything from the field. There are a few features that are coming to the iOS version that aren't included, like Private Listening, which allows users to use the phone earpiece instead of the loudspeaker. 

SoundCloud, as you might know, is a a social network for sharing all sorts of audio, including (but not limited to) music, podcasts, and sound effects. The timeline system uis really cool, in that it allows users to leave comments at specific points throughout a track. 

While smartphones aren't really widely-used for Serious Business when it comes to video production, it's much easier to imagine them finding a home among those recording audio. With the right microphone and apps like SoundCloud, it's pretty easy to get time-sensitive content out into the wild. 

Audiophiles, how do you use SoundCloud? Do you do a lot of editing on your Android devices? Which apps do you use?

Source: SoundCloud

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4 years ago

LG Venice leaked for Boost Mobile, as ZTE Warp Sequent goes on sale

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Those crazy tipsters at @evleaks are back once more, and today they bring word of a mid-range LG device heading to Boost Mobile. What we see here is supposedly the LG Venice, aka, a renamed LG Optimus L7. Otherwise -- as ever -- we get nothing but the name and an image. Given recent leaks from these guys though, we'd be surprised if this wasn't in stores in the not to distant future. 

The L7 itself packs a respectable spec list for a mid-range smartphone. Part of LG's style series, it brings with it a 4.3 inch display and Ice Cream Sandwich overlayed with LG's Optimus UI. 

In other Boost Mobile news today, the ZTE Warp Sequent is now available from the carrier. Costing just $199.99 off contract, the Warp Sequent looks a lot like the ZTE Grand X while packing different specs. Differences include the processor -- 1.4GHz processor, type not known, in place of the Grand X's Tegra 2 -- and just three capacitive buttons unlike its European counterpart. The same 4.3 inch display remains, as does the 5MP rear camera and stock Android 4.0. 

Sources: @evleaks, Boost Mobile

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4 years ago

Archos 101XS now available across Europe

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Archos' latest tablet offering, the 101XS, is now available to buy from the company's European websites. In UK money, the 10 inch, Ice Cream Sandwich toting tablet will set you back a penny under £300, but the price does include the keyboard dock. 

The 16GB 101XS is a marked improvement on previous Archos tablet offerings, and while launching with Ice Cream Sandwich, a Jelly Bean update has been promised before the end of the year. Considering the stock nature of the software on-board the device, there's no reason to doubt this. If you're tempted by a new 101XS, be sure to check out our review

Source: Archos

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4 years ago

Padfone 2 set for announcement on October 16

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ASUS just mailed out invites to events in Milan, Italy, and Taipei Taiwan for a Padfone 2 announcement on October 16. We don't know much about the Padfone 2, but some sketchy benchmarks have been floating around suggesting that we'll see a quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor in there.

The original Padfone was a bizarre Voltron of mobile gadgets, with the phonebeing devoured whole by the tablet, which was in turn docked with a keyboard, and was accompanied by a stylus that doubled as a Bluetooth headset. Sheer madness, cats and dogs living together, mass hysteria, etc. etc. Check out our hands-on from Mobile World Congress for a closer look. We can only assume that the next generation will follow a similar form factor with a few refinements (thinner, faster), but who knows what else they'll add on top of that; maybe dual-booting to Windows when docked with the keyboard. Crazier things have happened. 

Do you guys dig the form factor? How weird could ASUS get with the next Padfone while still being in the realm of feasibility?

Source: Notebook Italia

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4 years ago

ZTE Anthem 4G brings a mid-range option to MetroPCS

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MetroPCS announced a new addition to their lineup this morning with the ZTE Anthem 4G. The Anthem 4G represents a solid mid-range device that can access MetroPCS's higher speeds on its LTE network.

The ZTE Anthem 4G sports:

  • 4.3-inch WVGA capacitive touchscreen
  • 1.2GHZ dual-core processor
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)

Yeah, we're disappointed that another phone is released with Gingerbread, but the customers targeted by this device probably don't care.

The Anthem 4G can be had 'in the coming weeks' for $219 (plus tax after mail-in rebate) and 4G plans range from $40 - $70/month, including a $55 unlimited data plan.

So if you're in the market for a budget phone on MetroPCS that can handle 4G speeds, you may want to consider the Anthem 4G.

Source: PR Newswire

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4 years ago

The Bard's Tale brings medieval debauchery to Android

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The Bard's Tale has found its way to Android today, and is available in Google Play and soon in the NVIDIA Tegra Zone for  $5.99. 

The action RPG provides 20 to 30 hours of gameplay, which drags a nameless rogue to unwillingly defend mankind against nefarious evils. He has a hard time getting there, but thanks to the occasional incentives of coin and cleavage, plus back-up from creatures summoned through song, he seems to get by. 

If you're sitting on the fence about this one, we're working on a review which will be up real soon. From what I've played so far, the dialog is hilarious and sells the game pretty much on its own. Anybody play the original game on PC or console? How about the old Interplay version from 1985 (which, by the way, is bundled with the game)? 

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4 years ago

Official Dick's Sporting Goods app comes to Android

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An official Dick's Sporting Goods app has hit the Google Play Store. Dick's Sporting Goods is the largest U.S. sporting retailer, so it's great to see an app finally released. I know that when I have sports clothes to buy, I seek out a Dick's Sporting Goods, so I'm happy to be able to shop right from my Android device.

The app is well designed and offers a lot of functionality. If you shop at Dick's quite a bit, by now you're familiar with the ScoreCard, which is their rewards program. With the app, you can manage your rewards and track the points that you've accumulated. You can also scan your area for the nearest store to you, shop right from the app and view the weekly ad. You can also scan items to see what others are saying about them.

It's been a long time coming, but a Dick's Sporting Goods official app is finally available. The app is well designed too, so if you shop for sports gear often, definitely check out this app. 

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4 years ago

NTT DoCoMo launches lightest Android tablet ever

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Today, NTT DoCoMo launched the NEC Medias Tab UL N08-D, which weighs a scant 249 g. By comparison, other 7-inch tablets like the Kindle Fire HD weigh in the neighborhood of 400 g. Even the Nexus 7 is a relatively tubby 345 g. Apparently the NEC Medias Tab UL pulls this off by using a kind of carbon fiber that's used in modern aircraft construction. The Medias Tab UL isn't too thick, measuring a mere 7.9 mm on the profile. The specs don't even seem to suffer for all of this lightness, either:

  • 1.5 GHz dual-core processor
  • 7-inch 1280 x 800 LCD display
  • 8 megapixel Exmore R back-lit camera plus secondary 2 megapixel shooter on the front
  • 3100 mAh battery
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 75 Mbps downlink

There are a few cool software features too, like a web browser that lets you actively view two tabs at the same time, and an "HD haptics" vibration feedback mechanism that's applied to just about every on-screen element.  

Anyone in Japan can find more info and information purchasing over at NTT DoCoMo. For the rest of us, how important is weight to your choice in tablets? Does an obnoxiously light device appeal to you, or do you prefer having a little bit of solid heft to your gadgets?

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4 years ago

ZTE announces Blade III, confirms Nordic debut

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Chinese manufacturer ZTE has released a wide range of smartphones this year, and it's showing no sign of slowing the page of its product launches. Today the company's announced the ZTE Blade III, the latest member of the blade family, and pegged it for launch first in Scandinavia. Like many of ZTE's products, the Blade III is aimed at the budget-to-mid-range market, and comes equipped with a 4-inch WVGA (480x800) display and a 1GHz single-core Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU, backed up by 512MB of RAM and a 5MP rear camera. Those aren't mind-blowing specs, but at least it's running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box. On the outside, the Blade III sports a curved chassis similar to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

ZTE says the Blade III will launch in Finland in September and Sweden in October, priced at 1499 SEK ($230) SIM-free. UK availability has yet to be confirmed, but launches in more territories are apparently planned before the end of the year.

We've got today's press release in full after the break, along with the complete spec list.

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4 years ago

Sony Xperia T drops by the FCC with AT&T LTE support, we feign surprise

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You already knew the Sony Xperia T was headed to AT&T, right? The phone's cropped up a couple of times before sporting AT&Ts "globe" branding, and today brings further evidence, as the device has appeared at the FCC with support for AT&T-friendly LTE bands. The international Xperia T, due to launch next week, doesn't feature LTE support at all, and it looks like the AT&T version has undergone some minor changes in order to enable 4G connectivity. As we pointed out in earlier leaked renders of the AT&T Xperia T, the back is split up into segments, most likely to help out with antenna performance.

There's no word on exactly when the Xperia T will be arriving on AT&T, but given the half-year wait Sony fans endured for the Xperia Ion, we're not holding our breath.

Source: FCC, via: PhoneArena

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4 years ago

LG Optimus 4X HD slashed to £300 by UK retailer

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Everybody loves a bargain, right? How about this one then. UK online retailer, Expansys, has slashed the price of the LG Optimus 4X HD to just £299.99. All in, that's a saving of around £170 on the intial launch price of the device. 

The reduced price only applies to the black version, sadly, and will be an EU model 4X HD with a UK 3-pin adaptor. No matter. While the 4X HD may about to be usurped in the ranks by the forthcoming Optimus G, the 4X HD still packs top of the line specifications for a 2012 Android device. 

Packing a Tegra 3 processor, 1GB of RAM, a 4.7 inch IPS 720p display, removable 2150mAh battery, NFC and Ice Cream Sandwich, at this price point the Optimus 4X HD is a real steal. 

Source: Expansys, More: Hands-on with the LG Optimus 4X  HD

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4 years ago

Acer officially launches the Iconia Tab A110, with Tegra 3 and Jelly Bean

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The Acer Iconia Tab A110 first debuted back at Computex, in June. Back then, the 7-inch device was running Android 4.0, propelled along by its Tegra 3 processor. Slated for a Q3 release, we heard following the show that the A110 would in fact be bumped up to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean before it hit the shelves. True to their word, it's Q3 -- just, the device has been bumped to Jelly Bean, and a formal release has been announced. 

The A110 is already up for pre-order with at least one UK based retailer, priced at £180. For the money we get -- besides Jelly Bean and Tegra 3 of course -- 8GB on board storage, expandable via microSD card, 1GB of RAM, a 1024x600 display, a 3420mAh battery, HDMI out and a 2MP front facing camera. 

The A110 will of course be going toe-to-toe with Google's own, Nexus 7. Both tablets have key features which could win over the crowds. The Nexus 7 of course will receive it's updates directly from Google, has a better screen, and is cheaper for the comparable model. The A110 has a microSD card slot, which on its own may be enough to sway some towards the Acer offering. 

With this, the Nexus 7, and Amazon's new Kindle Fire HD, the 7-inch tablet space is really beginning to heat up. There is no concrete release date provided by Acer for the A110's availability, but you can catch the full press release after the break. 

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4 years ago

Google Nexus 7 looks set to launch in India in November

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Let's face it, Android fans around the world want to be able to get their hands on the Nexus 7. And rightfully so. Google has hit a sweet spot with the Nexus 7 in terms of value for money. The list of official markets that can purchase the Nexus 7 is still pretty slim, so the news that the device is expected to become available in India is welcome. 

The good folks over at AndroidOS.in recently attended a press event thrown by ASUS India, where they were told to expect the Nexus 7 to arrive there in November. Originally, the Nexus 7 was expected to ship in October in India. Google still needs to work on providing their content services globally, but getting the Nexus 7 into hands is a good place to start. 

Source: AndroidOS.in

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