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4 years ago

Huawei executive happily shows off 6.1 inch Ascend Mate ahead of CES


How big is too big? If you're Huawei, definitely not 6.1 inches. Blurring the lines between tablet and phone, what we see here is the 6.1 inch, 1080p Huawei Ascend Mate, expected to be announced officially at CES in Las Vegas. The man showing the device off is Huawei executive, Richard Yu, the same man who took to Sina Weibo to tell us about Huawei's other Android device expected at the show, the 5 inch D2. 

The impromptu demonstation took place in a Huawei store in Guangzhou, where he just happened to pull out the gargantuan smartphone and offer it up to the packed masses. Perhaps fitting that part of the demonstration included showing a movie on the phone, after all, it's got to be one bonus to having a huge phone. What movie though? What else, but Titanic. Fitting. Check out a short video of it after the break. 

via Engadget

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4 years ago

Shape Services discount their Android apps for the holiday season


We have featured Shape Services many times here at Android Central, but I would say they're best well known for their fantastic instant messaging client IM+ -- full review here.

Just in time for Christmas, Shape has decided to have a big sale on all its products, and there are some rather hefty discounts on offer. These special prices will be available until the end of the year.

Click the below apps to be taken to Google Play.

  • IM+ Pro - Sale price: $0.99 (normal price $9,99)
  • Business Card Reader - Sale price: $0.99 (normal price $4.99)
  • RDM - Sale price: $1.99 (normal price $7.99)
  • iDisplay - Sale price: $1.99 (normal price $7.99)

Get 'em while they're hot.

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4 years ago

Archos introduces the 97 Titanium tablet, with a high resolution display and Jelly Bean


Archos has quietly introduced their latest Android tablet, the 97 Titanium. Part of their elements series, the 97 refers to the 9.7 inch display. Spec wise, the 97 Titanium is a pretty impressive piece of equipment. 

The 9.7 inch IPS display has a resolution of 2048 x 1536 with a PPI of 264. That's iPad 4 territory right there. Underneath, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean runs over a dual-core 1.6GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, but only 8GB of on-board storage. It is expandable however via microSD card, and Archos claims 64GB cards are supported with no worries. Camera wise, there's a 5MP shooter on the rear, and a 2MP front facer.

Commendably, Archos is running what looks to be a straight up, vanilla version of Jelly Bean. Instead of the screen layout we see on the Nexus 10 though, Archos has gone for what we would traditionally think of from an Android tablet. The 97 Titanium isn't the plastic hell we might possibly expect either. The casing on the rear is constructed from Aluminum, and the thickness is kept down to just 9mm.

It isn't up for sale yet, nor do we know just when and where it will be, or how much it will cost. Archos has released a number of Android devices in the past, but rarely made a compelling case for purchase. This one could be a different story. For those looking for a stock experience, oodles of storage and a killer display, the 97 Titanium could meet some needs.

Source: Archos 

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4 years ago

Press shot of forthcoming ZTE Grand S leaks ahead of CES unveiling


We've already seen the first signs of ZTE's forthcoming CES announcement, but as we enter the holiday period we're treated to an alleged first look at the device. This leaked press render is supposedly the 5-inch, 1080p ZTE Grand S. Other than an image and a name, we still know very, very little about the device aside from its size and screen resolution. Oh, and it's thin. 

Further confirming the Grand S name, ZTE has been teasing the device themselves over on their Sina Weibo account. Posted there are some sketches of the Grand S -- and by sketches, we really do mean sketches -- and a promotional flyer depicting the Grand S name adorned on the side of a boat. The writing may be in Chinese, but "CES2013" definitely is not. Whatever the finished product actually ends up being, Android Central will be on the ground in Las Vegas to bring you it all. 

Sources: Engadget, Sina Weibo

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4 years ago

Verizon customer database hacked; 300,000 entries leaked online [UPDATE Verizon's response]


Update 2: Verizon has responded, and they disagree with many key points in the story here. Following is their full response:

The ZDNet story is inaccurate. This incident was reported to the authorities when we first learned of it months ago and an investigation was launched. Many of the details surrounding this incident are incorrect and exaggerated. No Verizon systems were breached, no root access was gained, and this incident impacted a fraction of the number of individuals being reported.

We take any and all attempts to violate consumer and customer privacy and security very seriously, so we notified individuals who could potentially have been impacted and took immediate steps to safeguard their information and privacy. Verizon has also notified law enforcement of this recent report as a follow-up to the original case.

This sounds pretty positive, and kudos to Verizon for reaching out on the Saturday before Christmas. The original text still follows for reference. 

Update: ZD Net has updated their original story, and it appears that the records are for FIOS customers and not wireless customers. We'll leave this in place so that the FIOS customers among you have a heads up

According to ZDNet, a hacker has gained access to over 3 million records from a Verizon Wireless customer database. The information includes names, addresses, serial numbers, and passwords. The hacker gained access to the server on July 12, and claims to have contacted Verizon, but since the have reportedly ignored his report, he has pasted 300,000 of the records online. Supposedly these database is broken up into regions, and the leaked region is in and around Pennsylvania. The records are stored in plain text, and the hacker "might leak the rest later".

If you're a Verizon customer, now would be a good time to change your account password. We're not going to go into the details or link to the pastebin of account data. We hate delivering this sort of news, but we know you need to be informed. We hope Verizon is quick to address the issue, and look forward to hearing their side of things. 

Source: ZD Net

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4 years ago

Android and augmented reality make this model TARDIS bigger on the inside


Chances are, you know a Doctor Who fan. Greg Kumparak, formerly of Tech Crunch is also a (pretty big) Doctor Who fan, and decided to get a little crafty and build his own TARDIS. As explained in the video above, a TARDIS is a vehicle to drive you through space and time, that just happens to look like a 1960s era British police call box. Greg's looks pretty authentic after a nice paint job.

But here's the thing about a TARDIS. They are bigger on the inside. While that is easy enough to accomplish with the magic of television, it took a different kind of magic to make it happen in the real world. That's where Android comes in. Using augmented reality, Greg can open the TARDIS door and point his Nexus camera at a freaky black and white pattern. Thanks to the Qualcomm augmented reality framework, Greg built an app to interpret that pattern, and display the interior of his TARDIS as it should be on his screen. Very cool.

This just might be the best use of augmented reality ever. Be sure to watch the video, and hit the source link to read a little about how it was constructed.

Source: GK's blog

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4 years ago

HTC One VX unboxing and video walkthrough


Behold, the HTC One VX on AT&T. More than a One V, less than a One X, and dancing right around the noble One S without giving it as much as a mention in its already convoluted name. We've gone hands-on with the One VX a couple times since it was announced in early October, and it's now available for purchase, having missed its original launch date by a few weeks.

More: Full HTC One VX specs

So what, exactly, is the One VX? In a single sentence, it borrows bits and pieces from the entire HTC One line for a mid-range smartphone that as of now is exclusive to AT&T.

Physically speaking, it's a tad smaller than the One X, but less of a curvy box and more of a sleek and sexy One S. The back is done in the same white polycarbonate shell as AT&T's original One X. (Remember that the One X+ moved to a soft-touch coating.) And the One S is more svelte than the One VX, about 2 mm slimmer, with different curves, and it's a tad shorter and narrower, too. The One VX its between the One S and One X in screen size, too, at 4.5 inches. And while it only has a 540x960 qHD resolution, the move to Super LCD 2 from AMOLED makes a noticeable difference.

Our full review is on the way. For now, hit the break for our HTC One VX unboxing and video walkthrough.

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4 years ago

Last chance: Win a 32GB Nexus 7 3G and a $25 gift card


Here it is, folks. The fifth day in our five-day Nexus 7 and Google Play Gift Card giveaway, courtesy of the fine folks at Google. We've already had four days of entries, and this here's your last chance. As a reminder, you'll be entering to win a free 32GB Nexus 7 3G (that's the one with optional GSM cellular service), plus a $25 Google Play Gift Card to get you started with apps, movies, movies or books.

To enter, hit up this thread in our forums for instructions. Good luck, and we'll announce the winners Monday morning.

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4 years ago

The week in international Android news - Dec. 22, 2012


As things wind down for the holidays, and the torrent of international Android news temporarily slows to a trickle, there's just enough time for one last weekly round-up. And despite the incoming festivities, there's been plenty of interesting pre-Christmas news.

The week started with news of a serious security vulnerability in certain Samsung phones, which could allow a rogue app to take complete control of affected handsets. The was exploit discovered in kernel code for phones running Samsung's Exynos CPU, meaning it affects devices like the international Galaxy S3 and S2, as well as all Galaxy Note 2 models. It's a bg deal, and Samsung has acknowledged its existence, saying it's working to deliver a fix "as quickly as possible."

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4 years ago

Light Flow updated to support 62 more apps, multiple calendars


Light Flow, a popular app to control notification LED's and sounds, has added support for a whole host of new apps today. In total, 62 new apps can now have their notification sound, vibration and LED flashing controlled including some notable apps like Falcon Pro. The app now also supports Ice Cream Sandwich users with multiple calendars, as well as the ability to swipe away calendar notifications to clear the LED flashing. As is usually the case, several different bugs have been squashed in this update -- from black screen and color issues on the Nexus 4 to translations for Turkish and Arabic.

You can get a list of all 62 apps added, as well as the complete list of all apps supported, at the source link below. If you haven't given Light Flow a look, it's well worth your $2.49 to buy it. There's also a free version with limited app support if you just want to give it a test drive.

More: Light Flow Changelog

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4 years ago

Times Square Official Ball app updated to ring in 2013


The official Times Square Ball app has just been updated to help you count down to 2013. Not everyone has a chance to be in Times Square for the new year, but at least with this app everyone can (assuming device compatibility) get part of the experience. It's not the smoothest or flashiest thing ever, but the app serves its purpose. You get a nice countdown to the new year, a livestream viewer of Times Square (you can watch the 2012 party currently) and you can even upload a photo to be shown on the big screen if you're lucky.

Sound interesting? You can grab a download for free at the Play Store link above. It probably doesn't do you much good over 10 days out from the party, but you'll have it installed and ready to go for New Years Eve. 

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4 years ago

Adding a great video experience to Android apps just got easier with the new Youtube Android Player API


Google has finally released the Youtube Player API for Android that they previewed at Google I/O 2012, making it easy for developers to integrate a proper video experience into their apps. The API will allow developers to embed and play any Youtube video natively, without sending users off to the Youtube app or browser. The official list of benefits:

  • High-quality video playback supported on Android 2.2 (Froyo) or newer
  • Easy integration with your Android application (no WebView required)
  • Fullscreen and orientation change support
  • Closed captions display
  • Support for YouTube ads
  • Programmatic access, similar to existing Player APIs, to most aspects of the YouTube video playback experience
  • Integration with the Android YouTube app using a standard set of YouTube Intents

Google has been working with a few partners, so we already have a few apps using the new API. They include Flipboard, Buzzfeed,, SoundTracking, and Fitness Flow (pictured above).

If you're a developer, you'll want to read the documentation and code examples -- find all that info at the source link. If you're an end user, you're job is easier (but just as important). Support these developers who use the right tools and deliver amazing Android apps. Hit the break for a Google Developers Live recording all about the new API.

Source: Youtube blog

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4 years ago

Initial hands on and first impressions of the Kobo Arc


Back in late August, we received an invite to a press event being held during the IFA 2012 show in Berlin. Nothing out of the ordinary there, after all, press events are the bread and butter of such shows. This one was a little different though, it came from Kobo, better known for their e-readers and their e-book store. Kobo has ventured into the Android world before, with the less than impressive Vox. Despite gaining Google certification during its life, the Vox was a little limp as an Android tablet. 

What Kobo had to show us this time though was something quite different. The Arc was immediately noticable as a huge leap forward from the Vox. A 7-inch device, with a 1280x800 resolution display, front facing stereo speakers, Android 4.0 and the full Google suite of applications this time straight out of the box. Underneath, a 1.5GHz dual-core OMAP 4470 processor, 1GB of RAM and 16, 32 or a whopping 64GB of storage. Click on past the break for some first impressions and hands on with the device.

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4 years ago

The 2012 Android Central Awards will run until Monday, Dec. 24


We're running the 2012 Android Central Awards through the weekend, making sure everyone has a chance to vote for their favorites. We spend the year talking about the devices and apps we love, but this is your chance to tell us what you love. It's an easy to take survey, complete with a write-in slot for each category in case we overlooked something.

We're keeping things open until Monday, then we're going to close it up and tally the votes. We'll go through them all and let you know what devices and apps you, the great AC community, thinks are the best of 2012. Hit the link below from your computer or phone and let us know what you think!

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4 years ago

Amazon streaming video app now available for LG Google TV sets


The Amazon Instant Video app is now available for another Google TV device, as it's now in Google Play if you're using an LG Google TV set. Users can download the app and install right from their TV, and enjoy full HD content from Amazon.

Previously, to access Amazon's streaming video service you had to use the built in Chrome browser, which was less than an ideal experience. The release of the App for the LG sets means better searching and better frame rates that using the browser. You can download the app at the link above.

Still no signs of an Amazon VoD app for Android tablets yet, and that's a bit puzzling. Maybe they want to hold it back as an exclusive for the Kindle line, or they have concerns over Android openness, much like we saw from Netflix last year.

Source: +Google TV 

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