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4 years ago

Dark Gate review - a retro RPG built right for mobile


A throwback retro RPG by the name of Dark Gate was recently localized for English, and offers all of the classic feel of old-school role-playing games with a bunch of smart optimizations for the mobile interface.

The story starts off that Dark Gates are opening up around your area, unleashing unspeakable monsters into the world. You’ve got to keep the monsters at bay and close the gates to restore peace to the land. There’s a long winding storyline that follows the characters on this mission, but at the end of the day, Dark Gate is like any RPG - kill monsters, level up, get new gear, rinse, repeat.

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4 years ago

Motorola rolls out Android 4.0 to the XYBOARD WiFi 10.1, 8.2 while Verizon prepares XYBOARD 10.1 update


If you're a Motorola XYBOARD WiFi 10.1 or 8.2 owner, you have some reason to get excited today. Motorola have gone ahead and started the rollout of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to the XYBOARD WiFi 10.1 and 8.2. The changelog is packed with the typical ICS changes but in case you're wondering in detail, we've outlined them below for you all.

In other related news, Verizon has gone ahead and approved Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for the Motorola XYBOARD 10.1. Sadly, it looks as though the 8.2 is still waiting for its update but we imagine it can't be that far off.

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4 years ago

Motorola Defy Pro tumbles onto Rogers today


After a bit of a wait, the rugged Motorola Defy Pro is now available at Rogers for free on a two-year contract, or $274.99 if you're going month-to-month. As you might expect, the Defy Pro is just as tough as its predecessor, the Motorola Defy, except it has a QWERTY keyboard. The specs are about in line with the pricetag, which is to say that they're on the lower end. Here's a run-down. 

  • 2.7-inch 320 x 480 HVGA display with Gorilla Glass
  • Android 2.3 Gingerbread
  • 1 GHz processor
  • 5 megapixel camera with LED flash and front-facing VGA camera
  • 1700 mAh battery, 12 hours continuous use time, 13.5 days standby
  • IP67-certified (totally protected against dust, protected against immersion between 15 cm and 1 m)

The Motorola Defy Pro still isn't showing up in the Rogers online store, but I'm sure it'll pop up soon enough. In the meantime, there's plenty of information at Motorola Canada. Personally, I'm excited to give this a shot. There aren't a whole lot of Android phones with good QWERTY keyboards in a portrait orientation, nevermind ones that have any amount of ruggedization. The last one was the Motorola Admiral, and it never found its way up here to Canada. 

Anyone thinking of picking this up? I'm looking at you, BlackBerry refugees. Is Gingerbread a dealbreaker?

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4 years ago

Images of Nikon's Android powered Coolpix S800c leak out


Going off the previous rumor of Android powered Nikon cameras coming to market, Nikon Rumors now has some images of the device that shall be known as the Nikon Coolpix S800c. Phil already waxed poetic on the reasons for it, Jerry enjoyed the thought on the Android Central podcast. The sole image showing off the interface looks a lot like Android 2.3 Gingerbread which matches up with the expected specs:

  • 25-250 mm lens
  • 3.5-inch OLED screen
  • The camera runs all Google Play apps
  • The camera will probably run Android 2.3
  • Built-in GPS
  • Built-in Wi-Fi

Right now, according to Nikon Rumors an official announcement should be coming on August 22nd. In other words, we'll have to wait and see if that actually happens but for now you can jump below to see more of the camera. Assuming it comes to market and is priced well, would you be interested in picking one up?

Source: Nikon Rumors; via: The Verge

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4 years ago

BlackBerry Music Gateway review


Here's a little gem that's been hiding in the back of Ignore, for the moment, that the BlackBerry Music Gateway is, well, from BlackBerry. And that it's got a BlackBerry logo on it. Instead, let's focus on what it does: It's an extremely simple way to wirelessly stream music from your phone to any device that accepts a 3.5mm headphone jack.

That's streaming music in your car. To your entertainment center. To computer speakers. Anything, really. And it does so with a little trick up its sleeve that makes getting started as easy as possible -- and a price that doesn't break the bank.

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4 years ago

Songza review - a playlist for for any occasion


Songza for Android was recently updated for tablet layouts, following up on the release of Concierge. The music streaming service’s big selling points are its mood-based playlists and time-based suggestions. For example, launching the app on a Friday night in December will probably offer a playlist for Christmas-themed party songs, while Monday evenings are more likely to offer something to unwind from work. Of course, you can browse through the catalog of playlists ranging in subject matter from genre, activities, moods, decades, or culture.There’s even a cute record-store clerk category with playlists such as “This Will Piss Off Your Parents” and “Indie Music That’s Not Too Weird”.

Best of all, the app’s free and there aren’t any audio ads. I’ll try not to ask how they manage to swing that, on the off-chance someone catches on and we’ve gotta start paying $10/month.

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4 years ago

Q&A with TheScore - serving up Olympics coverage and diving into the Nexus 7


ScoreMobile for Android was recently updated for Nexus 7 compatibility and seeing as their app is all about keeping track of sports, they had a busy run during the Olympics. Of course, the app still keeps tabs on football, hockey, baseball, and golf too. We caught up with Score Media's VP of Digital Products Dale Fallon to talk about what it's like working with Jelly Bean, how their traffic has bean over the last couple of weeks, and how their sporting coverage is going to progress over the next couple of months. 

Hi, Dale! Thanks for your time. Care to give us a bit of background on ScoreMobile?

No problem, Simon. ScoreMobile actually existed first as a Java-based app back in 2005. It was very basic, offering just the latest scores of games and was only available in Canada. It was in 2007 when it made its debut as an iPhone web app in the US,  and then, a year later, as a native app that things really exploded. Since then we’ve developed native apps for Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, iPad, Kindle Fire and now the Nexus 7. This has helped us grow to 3.5 million active users every month around the world, making ScoreMobile one of the top sports apps on the planet. It’s certainly come a long way – from an app which just gave you the score, to one which provides an in-depth experience, offering scores, stats, free push alerts, news and options to personalize, as well as the ability to track fantasy league rosters. With NFL season just around the corner, I know a lot of fans are researching and planning their fantasy rosters!

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4 years ago

Seidio Desktop Cradle review - simple stylish syncing


The Seidio Desktop Cradle offers a simple, stylish way to charge and sync your phone. The flexible USB connector allows the phone to lean free-form against the backrest, while the heavy based with grip pads keeps it from moving around too much. 

The pivoting USB plug is the big seller for this cradle. It offers just enough flexibility to accommodate a device, even if it has a case on. The resting viewing angle without a case is well under 45 degrees, so your device stays mostly upright with just enough of an angle to stay viewable. 

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 torn down, found to have tablet parts inside


Hey, look at that. It's the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 -- perhaps you remember it from last week's launch event -- and it's got its business spread out all over the place. The folks at ifixit did their usual teardown job and, sure enough, it's a tablet. They're pretty keen on the reparability, but it's not like there are droves of people just waiting to tear into this thing. No, for us it's all about the teardown pr0n. Hit the source link below to see all the dirty deets.

Source: ifixit

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4 years ago

Barnes & Noble bringing Nook products to the UK


In a move it's hoping will shake up the e-rader market outside of the U.S., Barnes & Noble has announced that it's bringing some of its E Ink-based e-readers to the United Kingdom later this year, marking the company's first international expansion. The only products mentioned by name are the Android-powered Nook Simple Touch and Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight, however the new shows the Nook Color and Nook Tablet too, so we wouldn't be surprised to see those devices hitting UK store shelves sooner rather than later.

The new Nook products are due to arrive on British shores this October along with the Nook Store content library, including "2.5 million digital titles," and leading UK books, magazines and newspapers. As Barnes and Noble has no retail presence in the UK, they'll team up with "leading retailers to be announced shortly," and sell through both online and brick-and-mortar stores. If we had to guess, we'd say leading UK bookseller Waterstones would be an ideal candidate for a possible B&N team-up.

Barnes & Noble will be hoping to recreate its U.S. success in the British market, which is dominated by Amazon's Kindle in the e-reader space, as well as Apple's iPad. We'll be watching with interest to see whether they can pull it off.

Source: Barnes & Noble

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4 years ago

Samsung announces Europe launch for dual-SIM Galaxy S Duos


It leaked around a month ago, but today it looks like the Samsung Galaxy S Duos is officially official. The phone is a 4-inch dual-SIM entry-level dealie, powered by a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 CPU, backed up by 512MB of RAM and running Android 4.0 with Sammy's TouchWix Nature UX. There's also 4GB of on-board storage -- expandable via microSD card slot -- as well as a 1500mAh battery and 5MP rear camera. And unlike some dual-SIM phones, the S Duos allows both SIMs to be active at the same time, so you can take a call on one while receiving on the other.

Normally dual-SIM phones are limited to developing markets, where phone users often have two or more SIMs because individual network coverage is spotty. What's unique about the Galaxy S Duos is that it's aimed at the European market. We imagine this type of phone might be useful to frequent European travelers, who might be interested in keeping two SIMs from different countries in the same device.

There's no release date given for this device just yet, but we imagine we'll learn more about the Galaxy S Duos at the IFA show in Berlin next week.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow

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4 years ago

Carphone Warehouse launches Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1


A little after it made its worldwide debut in New York City, UK retailer the Carphone Warehouse has announced that it's now selling the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 online and in stores across the country. Prices start at £399.99 for the Wifi-only version, going up to £499.99 for the Wifi and 3G model.

That's no small amount of money, but if you want the best stylus experience you can get on a tablet, with Samsung's Wacom-powered S Pen, the Galaxy Note 10.1 is the only place you'll be able to get it. For more on the Note 10.1, be sure to check out our full preview of the device from last week's launch event in New York City.

Carphone also sends word that until this Thursday, Aug. 24, it's offering the original Galaxy Note smartphone for free on £21 per month contracts with T-Mobile UK. No prizes for guessing why the retailer might want to burn through the last of its original Galaxy Note stock before next week...

Source: Carphone Warehouse

More: Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 hands-on

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4 years ago

OnLive restructuring to cost HTC $40 million


When it comes to financials, it seems HTC can't catch a break lately. The Taiwanese manufacturer says it'll book a loss of $40 million from its investment in troubled cloud gaming provider OnLive. OnLive, as you may remember, last week underwent restructuring and was sold to a newly-formed company in order to avoid bankruptcy.

HTC invested in OnLive in February 2011, at the height of its success in the smartphone market. Since then, however, OnLive has been absent from all of the company's noteworthy devices, and it's continued to struggle financially due to the high operating costs associated with cloud gaming. This isn't the first time an HTC investment has gone sour. The manufacturer's investment in Beats Audio is another recent example -- that company's founders recently bought back half of HTC's investment in Beats, after Beats Audio integration failed to differentiate HTC's high-end smartphones.

Elsewhere, HTC's profits and market share continue to be squeezed, with July revenues down 45 percent from 2011 to 2012. The company will be hoping an expected fall refresh of some devices will help it deal with increasingly fierce competition from the likes of Apple and Samsung.

Source: PC World

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4 years ago

Sony announces next-gen Exmor RS image sensors for mobile devices


Sony has announced its next generation of smartphone and tablet image sensors, dubbed 'Exmor RS.' Succeeding the company's current line-up of Exmor R sensors, Exmor RS will utilize a stacked CMOS sensor with a standard RGB coding, compared to earlier models which required additional detectors for white light in addition to red, green and blue.

Expected to make its debut in October, Exmor RS will come in three flavors -- two 8MP units, and a higher-end 13MP unit. In addition, Sony says it's developed new f/2.2 lenses to go with its new image sensors, opening the door to higher-quality HDR (high dynamic range) video recording on mobile devices.

Given the timing of this announcement, we don't expect to see Exmor RS used in any of the Sony phones to be announced at next week's IFA press conference on Aug. 29. instead, we'll be looking for the tech in the next generation of Sony phones in early 2013. But this isn't just big news for Sony fans -- remember that other brands like Samsung and Apple also use Sony camera tech in their leading products.

Source: Sony (Japanese), via: Engadget

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