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4 years ago

Rovio previews forthcoming update to Angry Birds Seasons

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Thats right, folks, Rovio is still pumping out updates to the Angry Birds franchise, as its latest video shows us. This time around in Seasons, we're celebrating Chinese New Year by smashing those little green pigs. The update is due to hit on Jan. 20, so if you're an Angry Birds fanatic thats just a few more days to wait.

If you've still not tried out Angry Birds Seasons and want to see what all the fuss is about, you'll find a handy download link after the break.

Source: Rovio

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4 years ago

ITC Judge rules in favor of Motorola in Apple patent dispute

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The ALJ (Administrative Law Judge) appointed by the International Trade Commission in the case of Apple v. Motorola has determined that Motorola Mobility does not violate three Apple-held patents.  A statement issued today by Motorola also says the following from Scott Offer, senior vice president and general counsel of Motorola Mobility:

We are pleased with today’s favorable outcome for Motorola Mobility.  Motorola Mobility has worked hard over the years to develop technology and build an industry-leading intellectual property portfolio. We are proud to leverage this broad and deep portfolio to create differentiated innovations that enhance the user experience.

The patents (collectively referred to as multitouch patents) in dispute covered ways to interact with the screen, including tapping, sliding and pinching with one or more fingers, and Apple claimed that Droid, Droid 2, Droid X, Cliq, BackFlip, Devour and Charm specifically were in violation.

Details are still a bit sparse, and this is best left for a legal expert to break down, but we wanted to share this breaking news with you guys.  The full press release is after the break.

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4 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX coming to Verizon Jan. 26

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We went hands-on with the Droid RAZR MAXX at CES 2012 and well -- it's a Droid RAZR with a 3300 mAh battery taking place of the original 1780 mAh power source and while that's impressive in its own right, the most impressive point is that it doesn't add any extra bulk. That said; If you skipped out on the original Droid RAZR due to battery concerns, come Jan. 26 you can pick up the Droid RAZR MAXX from Verizon Wireless for $299 with a two-year contract.

Source: Motorola; Thanks, Thomas!

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4 years ago

CrackBerry Kevin buys a $500 clock widget

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Not everything that happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, and we just had to share this one.  BlackBerry fanatic, Mobile Nations chief media officer, and all around wild-and-crazy guy  CrackBerry Kevin bought one of the most expensive apps in BlackBerry's app catalouge -- a $500 bit 'o code that places a clock on the homescreen.  Yes, it's a $500 clock widget. 

Nobody is telling whether or not there was any Campari involved, but it's certainly possible.  I'll let Kevin tell his side of the story himself.

Source: CrackBerry

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4 years ago

Wiping battery stats doesn't improve battery life, says Google engineer

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You there! Android hacker! Stop screwing around with your battery stats!

OK, if you're not part of the small subset of rooted users who likes to mess around with things they shouldn't, you can probably skip the rest of this story and read something more interesting below. But if you have fiddled with battery stats on your phone, or used any of the rooted "battery calibration" apps in the Android Market, which do the same thing, it's time to stop. Google engineer Diane Hackborn has taken to Google+ to dispel the myth that wiping battery stats can improve your battery life, or the efficiency with which your phone charges.

This file [batterystats.bin] is used to maintain, across reboots, low-level data about the kinds of operations the device and your apps are doing between battery changes. That is, it is solely used to compute the blame for battery usage shown in the "Battery Use" UI in settings. That is, it has deeply significant things like "app X held a wake lock for 2 minutes" and "the screen was on at 60% brightness for 10 minutes."

It has no impact on the current battery level shown to you. It has no impact on your battery life.

So there you have it. If you want better battery life, you're better off trying more basic techniques like keeping tabs on screen brightness or anything that might be running in the background. Or, y'know, buy a bigger battery...

More: +Diane Hackborn

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4 years ago

CES 2012 - Samsung's Smart Window is pretty amazing

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[ youtube video link for mobile viewing ]

No, it's not exactly Android related but it's too freaking cool not to post it! Soon, we shall be living in the world of Minority Report, and this "Smart Window" technology Samsung has at CES 2012 is going to help us get there. Ashley Esqueda checks out what's happening over at the Samsung booth and gives a little demo of the window.

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4 years ago

OnStar's RemoteLink App slings remote directions to your car, keeps tabs on fuel

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When Chevy finally launched the Volt plug-in hybrid electric car, they also kicked out an app with in-car communications and monitoring subsidiary OnStar to integrate owners' mobile phones with the vehicle. Similar to the MyFord Mobile app that Ford put out to integrate with their own Focus Electric, OnStar RemoteLink being shown off at CES 2012 hooks into the OnStar system onboard the vehicle, allowing the owner to remotely monitor the fuel levels, and in the case of the Volt, also check in on how the battery is charging, plus set off-peak charging schedule. RemoteLink also can plan routing on the phone and send it remotely to the car, saving you time the time of generally tedious address inputting when in the car. OnStar RemoteLink is available for both iPhone and Android phones and is compatible with most 2010-and-newer GM vehicles with OnStar.

But the app isn't the only thing OnStar had to show off at CES. Also on display was a new media system in their Volt show car that linked two Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablets for backseat users with the car's Verizon LTE connection and the center stack up front. By integrating LTE with the power of the Android tablets, OnStar was able to build a system where the driver can pull up a movie from the home computer and stream it back to the tablets attached to the back of the front seats to placate a squad of rambunctious youngsters, start a Skype video call between the kids and grandma, or presumably just put up Angry Birds to keep them entranced in avian demolition for a few hours.

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4 years ago

The Sun newspaper hits Android, as long as you're on Gingerbread

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British tabloid newspaper The Sun has decided to head down the digital route, with the arrival of its very own subscription-based Android application. 

The premise is quite promising if you're a regular Sun reader. All the "news", less of the paper. The first month's subscription will set you back just £0.69, which is low enough to tempt those more sceptical readers to give it a whirl. After this, though, the subscription rate will rise to £4.99 per month. And of course you don't need to head down to the local store every morning or tip the paperboy. The most obvious downfall, besides the fact that you're reading The Sun, is the lack of Honeycomb and ICS support. Newspapers would look pretty sweet on a shiny new Transformer Prime don't you think?

For those Android Central readers outside of the UK, The Sun is one of the biggest tabloid newspapers in the country and is owned by one Rupert "find me on Twitter" Murdoch. We're not saying that installing this app will mean that The Sun will be listening in on your voicemails, not at all. But just in case -- good morning, Mr Murdoch, we hope you're well.

Download links are after the break.

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4 years ago

Are you ready for some football? Get EA Sports' Madden NFL 12 for just a buck in the Android Market

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Get the latest of one of the most popular sports video game franchise ever, Madden NFL '12, for your Android device for just 99 cents from EA Sports.  The game was built for Android 2.1 or higher, and has optimized versions for both Tablets and the Xperia Play with it's built-in control pad.  You can choose to play as any of the 32 NFL teams, and different game-play modes allow for complete micro-management of every bit of action on the field.

It's Madden NFL 12, done right, for a buck.  Grab it using the handy link after the break.

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4 years ago

Android App Review: Nordstrom

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The official Nordstrom app lets you browse the store's collections and purchase clothes right from your Android device. When the app opens, you'll see the main menu which can be filtered by Department or Brand. If you select the Department filter, you'll get a list of different shopping departments: Women, Men, Juniors, Designer Collections, Baby & Kids, Shoes, Handbags & Accessories, Jewelry & Watches, Beauty & Fragrance, At Home & Gifts, Sale and Weddings. Brands will bring up every different brand that is carried by Nordstrom, or too long to spew out here.

There is always a menu that you can access via the action bar or menu button. Options are Your Style, Shop, Wish List, Events and Bag. Your Style allows you to browse various styles handpicked by Nordtrom.  Shop brings you right back to the area of the app where you can shop, Wish List saves everything that you would like to place onto your wish list, Events displays upcoming things to do at your local store and Bag is simply your cart.

You can purchase items directly from the app and either have it shipped to you or schedule an in-store pick-up.

Overall, the official Nordstrom app is very nicely done. Fans of the department store will find it to be a good experience and I'm sure will find that they're shopping more because they can do it anywhere. If you like Nordstrom or just want to check out a good shopping app, please find links to the free app after the break.

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4 years ago

VMWare co-founder Diane Greene named to Google board of directors

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Google has named Dianne Greene to its Board of Directors and Audit committee as of January 12.  Greene co-founded VMware in 1998 and served as CEO and president until 2008. She also serves on the board of Intuit since 2006.  Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, had the following to say about the appointment:

Diane is a special person who combines a sharp business acumen with a brilliant technical mind.  We know she will be a great contributor and we are grateful to have her insight.

Greene's qualifications include Master of Science degrees from UC Berkeley and MIT, as well as a mechanical engineering degree from the University of Vermont.

See the press release after the break.

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4 years ago

Sony Xperia S pre-orders start, available early March

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UK retailer Clove Technology has today started listing the recently-announced Sony Xperia S for pre-order, along with the news that the first stock is expected during the week commencing Mar. 5. The Xperia S, which was unveiled on Monday at CES, comes in at a surprisingly reasonable £467.99 including VAT. Clove's offering the black version only, Phones4U has already snapped up UK-wide exclusive rights to the white model.

To find out more about Sony's new flagship smartphone, check out our initial announcement post and hands-on feature.

Source: Clove Technology

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4 years ago

LG rumored to get first crack at next version of Google TV

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Google TV has seen a bit of a resurgance the past week or so with the announcement of new hardware partners, and now Google is possibly working on a new version of Google TV and bringing the software first to Korean manufacturer LG, according to a pair of anonymous sources speaking to Bloomberg

Neither LG nor Google confirmed the report.

The Bloomberg report linkens this to a possible expansion of the Nexus line, which so far has been limited to smartphones with the Nexus One, Nexus S and the new Galaxy Nexus. There has been talk of a possible "Nexus" tablet, but nothing confirmed, and it could well just be over-eager reporting and translation issues.

That's not to say Google hasn't had what we'd call "Google Experience" devices outside of the Nexus line. The Motorola Xoom is a Google Experience device, serving as a reference platform of sorts for Android's early tablets. And with more partners getting on board with Google TV just as one of the original manufacturers -- Logitech with its Revue set-top box -- is distancing itself, it could make sense to have a single, unadulterated platform on which developers could create and tweak apps for the big screen.

But it's important to note that the story really only says that LG may get the software first. And it stands to reason that any sort of reference platform for Google TV would come in the form of a set-top box, like the Revue, and not a more expensive and less portable television. Keep that in mind before we travel too far down the Nexus rabbit hole here. 

Source: Bloomberg

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4 years ago

Droid 4 manual gives the ins and outs of Motorola's latest

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If you're eyeing the Motorola Droid 4 and want to pore over every inch of the smartphone before it goes on sale eventually, Motorola's made the Droid 4 user manual available for download. Probably the most useful part of the Droid 4 manual will be the bevy of customizations and security tweaks Moto's added. For a look at what you'll be getting hardware-wise, be sure to check out our Droid 4 hands-on from CES.

Download: Droid 4 manual; More: Droid 4 forums
Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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4 years ago

BeyondPod updated to include better support for ICS

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Over the next little while we're slowly going to see Android 4.0 ICS rolled out to a number of devices and for some -- that may cause some havoc when it comes to app compatibility. One of the more popular podcast apps on Android, BeyondPod has now been updated to include not only better support for Ice Cream Sandwich but correct a few other issues within the app as well:

  • Better support for Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.
  • BeyondPod has a new launcher icon.
  • On devices running Android 2.3 and later, you can now switch between posts in the post view by swiping left or right.
  • Small "face lift" of the player screen.
  • Added a new option that allows videos to be automatically included in the playlist the same way audio episodes are.
  • Added a new setting that allows video playback to continue when the screen is manually turned off.
  • Many bug fixes.

Whether you're an already existing BeyondPod user or just looking for an ICS compatible podcast app, BeyondPod may be just what you're looking for. There is a lite and paid version available, with the lite being free and the paid version around $7. Download can be found past the break for you -- once you're done, make sure you add the best damn Android podcast in the world!

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