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4 years ago

Photon 4G owners wanted -- Motorola is looking for software testers

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Motorola has made an official request for "Pre-release software testers" of an unknown update for the Motorola Photon 4G.  This is standard practice for Motorola, who likes to slowly roll out their final builds to a select few in what they call a "soak test".  This gives Motorola (and the carriers) a bigger set of eyeballs looking for any potential bugs that limited internal testing just didn't find.  

In the past we've seen soak tests for updates both big and small, so there's no knowing exactly what this one is going to be.  We can't see the future, but I don't think this one will be Ice Cream Sandwich.  But any update is good news as long as it makes things better.  Motorola needs a thousand testers, and I think you guys are up to the challenge -- hit the source link and sign up!

Source: Motorola.  Thanks, Deaofly!

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4 years ago

Grab a 32GB Acer Iconia A500 for just $299 at Woot

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I'm a sucker for daily deals sites, and had to pass this one along.  A 32GB Acer Iconia A500 (one of our top picks of last year) for just under $300 bucks is nothing to sneeze at.  We know the next generations of tablets and quad-core is coming soon, but the A500 is still a hell of a tablet and this is a hell of a price.  If you're in the market for a new tablet, or just want to window-shop, head over to Woot and have a look-see.

Source: Woot!

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4 years ago

Android Central Editors' app picks for Jan 21, 2012

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Looking for some new apps for your beloved Android device, well you are in luck today. Hit the break with us and let's check out some of the teams favorite applications from this week.

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4 years ago

iOS users get 'Samsunged' in new Galaxy S II TV ad

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Samsung loves to poke fun at Apple users, and their latest commercial does a rather good job of it, telling iOSers that "the next big thing is already here". In the commercial, Sammy pokes fun at the fact that the iPhone 4S "looks like last year's phone", while also showcasing the Android's free turn-by-turn navigation on the Galaxy S II. iOS, of course, lacks this functionality out of the box.

The reaction: "aww, we just got Samsunged."

Source: iMore

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4 years ago

Latest Apple patent lawsuit targets Galaxy Nexus lockscreen

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The latest installment of Apple vs. Samsung saga sees Cupertino taking offense with the lockscreen on the Galaxy Nexus. The complaint, filed once again in Germany, is the first directed towards the Android 4.0 flagship device. The claim made is that the Galaxy Nexus infringes upon Apple's own slide-to-unlock utility model. 

FOSS Patent's blogger Florian Mueller describes this utility model as a limited fast-track patent that companies are allowed to file for alongside traditional patents. Apple has done just this with slide-to-unlock in Germany. Samsung's defense points to a device from Sweden known as the Neonode, which managed to persuade a court in the Netherlands in 2011 to question the validity of the Apple's slide-to-unlock filing.

The court is expected to reveal its decision on Mar. 16. What's clear already, though, is that we're sure to see more of these patent lawsuits as the year continues.

Source: iMore

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4 years ago

Sony Ericsson ST25i 'Kumquat' pic leaks, is Mini-Me to Xperia S's Dr. Evil

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We saw plenty of the Xperia S before it officially surfaced at CES, and we've already seen leaked photos of the MT27i "Pepper", along with a purported leaked roadmap for other Sony phones. Today, though, XperiaBlog has the first image of at what is reportedly the Sony (Ericsson) ST25i "Kumquat", a mid to high-end Android phone with a 3.5-inch display and a familiar industrial design.

The "Kumquat", which according to the leaked roadmap is due this April at a ~€260 price point, is apparently powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor, with a 5MP camera and a qHD (960x540) display. If the rumored specs and price are correct -- and admittedly that's still a pretty big "if" -- this device could be very tempting for those looking for a smaller, more portable smartphone with high-end specs.

Hopefully we'll see more of the "Kumquat" at Sony's Mobile World Congress presentation in just a few weeks, where the manufacturer looks set to reveal more of its 2012 line-up.

Source: XperiaBlog

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4 years ago

Google Sky Map getting open sourced

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Google's own window into the night sky is all set to head down the open-source road. The Google Sky Map application has been massively successful, currently boasting over 20 million users. Not bad considering this app was created in part just to show off the capabilities of the early Android smartphones. 

Now though, Google has decided that it is "donating Sky Map to the community." Through a collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, future development of the application will be the result of student projects. In addition to this, the app itself has been open-sourced, allowing budding astronomers to take the code and "augment it as they wish."

You'll find download links to Google Sky Map after the break -- it's still a brilliant way to show off what Android can do. 

Source:Google Research Blog

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 16GB now on sale at Futureshop for only $400

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If you live near a Futureshop and have yet to pick up an Android tablet yet for whatever reason -- this might be your weekend to set aside the time to do so. Right now -- Futureshop has the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 WiFi version coming with 16GB of storage on sale for only $400 until February 10th. That's $100 off the original price for Futureshop and one heck of a deal on a great tablet. Need to know more about the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1? You can check out our full review or hit up the Futureshop link below.

Source: Futureshop

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4 years ago

AT&T's Samsung Galaxy Note passes through FCC

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The Samsung Galaxy Note that we already know is coming to AT&T, has passed through the FCC.  There's absolutely no surprises -- we see the 21Mbps UMTS/HSPA+, GSM 850/1900, and band 4 and 17 LTE radios, along with NFC, Wifi and Bluetooth.  Now all we need to know is when the SGH-i717 will go up for sale -- all we've officially heard is "the coming weeks".  Even though it's not a surprise, we're still pumped to see this one stateside.

Source: FCC

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4 years ago

Hurry: HTC EVO View 4G still on sale at 1SaleADay for only $229

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Who wouldn't want to save $510 on a HTC EVO View 4G Android tablet? That's what I thought, just about everyone loves to save money and 1SaleADay has it priced out at $229 for today only. You got a few hours more to save nearly 70 percent on this tablet, which runs Android 2.3 which isn't ideal but hey you can always root it! The 7-inch form factor is a great on the go size, the 1.5GHz processor brings some nice speed to it, and it has 32GB of on board storage. Lots of positives to be seen here, so hit the link below to grab one for yourself.

Source: 1SaleADay

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4 years ago

Purported LG X3 render shows a thin, tall Android phone

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A new leaked render from Pocket Now shows what they say is the upcoming quad-core LG X3. Couple things to note here: One is that, yes, it's said to be running the new NVIDIA Tegra 3 chipset. That's not a great surprise, given that NVIDIA said last fall the first quad-core phones would hit early this year, and LG had the first dual-core smartphone with the Optimus 2X.

Nor are we overly concerned about there being only three capacitive buttons below that unofficially 4.7-inch display and -- WAIT A MINUTE. Capactive buttons and a 4.7-inch display? That's a big-ass display, at a 1280x720 resolution, no less. Compare that to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which has a 4.65-inch display -- but that's including the on-screen buttons, so you're really only dealing with 4.3-inches or so of screen real estate for non-full-screen tasks. If this X3 stuff pans out, we're talking 4.7 inches of usable space. Whoa. That's still a half-inch shy of the Samsung Galaxy Note, but still.

Other rumored specs include Ice Cream Sandwich (as it damn well should have), 8MP and 1.3MP cameras, 16GB of storage and a 2000 mAh battery, plus NFC, with thickness coming in under 9 mm. 

And, yes, folks, in all likelihood we'll see this guy at Mobile World Congress at the end of February. We're going to see a lot of phones at Mobile World Congress. Because it's a congress. Of mobile. Of the world. Or something. Whatever. We'll be there.

No, our only real questions rank thusly:

  • When can we get one?
  • Where can we get one?
  • Will human sacrifice be required to get it quickly in the United States? Because we're not above that.
  • Wait. Scratch that. No human sacrifice. That's wrong.
  • But seriously. Let's talk.

Source: Pocketnow 

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4 years ago

Photo Stream, Power Control Widget [From the Forums]

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It's has been a somewhat busy week for Android news plus, we managed to get another awesome Android Central podcast up for you all. If you missed out on anything, you'll want to jump back a few pages and get yourself up-to-date. Make sure you stop by the Android Central forums as well:

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

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4 years ago

Could Instagram land on Windows Phone before Android?

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We all really love unfounded rumors about things, right? (OK, not all of us.)  Well, Fastcompany seems to believe that Instagram, the ever-popular photo application for iOS devices, could actually land on Windows Phone before Android, eventhough Instagram has already confirmed that they are working on the Android application. Fastcompany is claiming that Microsoft may have worked out a deal with Instagram to bring the application to Windows Phone, but we are left wondering if Instagram would really release their application on a platform with a much smaller marketplace and market share.

For now we must sit back and wait, but we're not getting too worked up over things just yet.

Source: Fastcompany; via: WPCentral

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4 years ago

Android A to Z: What is the JIT?

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What is the JIT?  JIT stands for "Just In Time," and we use it to describe a Dalvik JIT compiler, which was added to Android with the 2.2 release.  It compiles bytecode into native machine code at runtime.  Essentially it takes the code for an app, analyzes it and converts it into something that runs faster.  It does all this while the application is running, and that's where the "just in time" tag comes from.  The JIT compiler designed for Android also can do this with a very short "warm up" time, meaning it doesn't take very long to analyze the code before it starts working.  It stores information in a cache in your phone's RAM, which means it's not an ideal solution for devices with low memory.  It's been optimized to have a small footprint -- about 100K per process -- but even that is enough to impact performance on older models like the G1 or HTC Magic.  This is why most phones that came before the Nexus One never got an official version from Google -- hardware limitations.

You hear terms like "runs faster" or 4 to 5 times performance increase anytime you talk about Android's JIT compiler.  A JIT compiler simply saves CPU cycles -- more work can be done for each clock cycle.  This means applications that were throttled by CPU performance get faster, and apps that are "rate-limited" (run until they are finished without taxing the processor to the maximum) finish faster and use less battery because of it.  Not all applications see a significant speed increase, and most applications written with the NDK or in native code won't see an increase at all, as they don't use the Dalvik virtual machine.  

If all this reads like Greek to you, that's OK.  To the end user (that's you and me) all we should see is better performance in most of our applications.  We certainly saw that when Froyo was released for the Nexus One, and things have just gotten better with every release.  For the more technically inclined, check out the video from Android engineers Ben Cheng and Bill Buzbee during Google I/O 2010 where the JIT compiler was introduced.

Previously on Android A to Z: What's an IPS display?; Find more in the Android Dictionary

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4 years ago

Acer Iconia A200 video hands-on

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So a few quick thoughts on the Acer Iconia A200, now that's it's available in stores: Yeah, it's yet another dual-core 10.1-inch Android tablet. Yeah, there's a little more software lag than we'd like to see. Yeah, we've got wait for it to get Ice Cream Sandwich. Yeah, it's not the thinnest tablet you've ever picked up. Been there, done that, right?

But absolutely do not write off the A200. For $350 for the 16GB model, you could do worse. Now, that statement might well change in the next 6 months, as ASUS has a 7-inch quad-core tablet on the way for $250. (Insanity!) But for today. we're pretty impressed with the A200 after just a few minutes of use. 

Most of what you see is pretty familiar. Honeycomb is Honeycomb. But Acer's tossed in some interesting software improvements, including a lockscreen with quick-launch shortcuts, and a neat little "Ring" launcher that lives on top of the home screens, but only when you call for it to. It's an interesting differentiator, and it's nice to see a little work put into an otherwise interim version of Android.

Hit the break for our quick hands-on. And stick around for the end of the video for a little surprise.

More: Acer A200 specs; Acer A200 forums

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