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2 years ago

Logitech has a Come to Jesus meeting, says Google TV 'cost us dearly'

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Kinda no way to sugar coat this: Logitech views the Revue and Google TV as a big fat failure, with CEO Guerrino De Luca telling investors and analysts this week that it "cost us dearly" -- to the tune of some $100 million in profits.

In a long and winding statement, De Luca tells of the pain of being an early adopter along with the rest of us. He sums it up nicely with this quote:

To make the long story short, we thought we had invented slice bread and we just made them. We’ve made commitment we just build a lot because we expected everybody to line up for Christmas and buy these boxes $300 that was a big mistake. I would do it again, I would definitely want to have Google establish Google TV, but with a significantly smaller and more prudent approach. It’s always the case people will tend to overestimate the short-term and underestimate the long-term.

Google TV or a child of Google TV or the grandchild of Google TV will happen. The integration of television in Internet is inevitable. But the idea that it would happen overnight in Christmas 2010 was very misguided and that also [cost] us dearly. As you know, we dramatically reduced the price of the box to what we thought the consumers valued it and actually doing fine.

While Logitech didn't quite give Google TV the middle finger, it's certainly taking its ball and going home (or, more accurately, focusing on its other products for now). It's unclear what other partners might step up for Google TV. Sony's been less than enthusiastic, and the lone Samsung TV we saw nearly a year ago remains just that -- a lone Samsung TV we saw nearly a year ago.

Source: Logitech, Seeking Alpha transcript (1, 2); via The Verge

Update: The $100 million referenced was for costs beyond the scope of just Google TV and the Revue. We've changed the headline and struck through the text to reflect.

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2 years ago

Android App Review: Adaptxt Beta

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Keyboards are a big deal on Android. Some let you swipe, other peck, but regardless of the method, they all have one thing in common: they're how you say anything on your phone. So imagine my excitement when I'm introduced to a new keyboard, promising more bacon never-before-seen levels of text prediction, all in a nice, shiny, new beta package.

I just had to try it out, and it is, in a word, meh. That's not to say it's terrible, but if you're perfectly content with your keyboard (be it Swype, SwiftKey X, SlideIT, or any of the other myriad of keyboards out there), you probably won't be switching over anytime soon.

First thing you've got to do after you've installed Adaptxt Beta is download a language pack. Not a huge deal, and it's not out of the ordinary. The language packs are called add-ons in Adaptxt, but nothing really prompts you to that. It's fairly self-evident because most of your options are greyed out, so go into the Add-on Manager and pick a language.

From there, there's not much to do. The settings menu is pretty barebones. You can enable or disable error correction, auto correction, and define the auto correction mode (which is set to medium by default). There's also an option for an extended character bubble and the interaction feedback settings.

So what's my beef with Adaptxt Beta? For one, I don't think it looks very good. The keys are smaller than on most of the other popular keyboards, the color scheme is unappealing, and the text prediction didn't blow my mind.

In fact, sometimes it feels like Adaptxt is less accurate at predicting than even the stock Android keyboard. Where other keyboards look like they try to make sense of what you're saying (for example, not tossing out seemingly random combinations of letters), Adaptxt Beta does just that. I get that it's trying to make sense of your current keystrokes. Still, it just muddies up the waters. Qua? Eva? Really?

On the upside, maybe we can chalk it up to the fact that it's in beta. Everyone gave Google a pass on their beta stuff, so I'll give KeyPoint Technologies the benefit of the doubt that they'll iron these little niggles out and continue to improve upon their product. At least it's free, right?

We've got download links and more pictures after the break.

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2 years ago

Amazon says Kindle Fire also will have Hulu Plus and ESPN

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The back-and-forth between the Amazon Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet continues, with the former this morning announcing that it will have Hulu Plus and ESPN ScoreCenter when it launches next week. That means the Kindle Fire will have the three major video content services -- Amazon, Netflix and now Hulu Plus -- which certainly is quite the selling point.

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2 years ago

The last version of Adobe Flash you'll download for mobile (until the next bugfix that is)

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Here it is, folks, the last version of Adobe Flash Player for mobile. Final. Kaput. Only, not really. While Adobe has halted work on future versions, we're still likely -- very likely -- to see the odd bugfix here and there. So head on over to the Android Market and snag version 11.1.102.59, which has some security enhancements and bugfixes, including video streaming on the Samsung Galaxy S II and enabling 1080p video on upcoming Tegra 3 devices.

Source: Adobe

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2 years ago

Android Central Podcast Ep. 78

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Audio-only stream below

We sift through our Motorola Droid RAZR review, the Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet, ASUS Transformer Prime and Tegra 3, the eventual end of Adobe Flash on Mobile, and still find time to sneak in a few of your e-mails and voicemails.

Welcome to the Greatest Android Podcast in the World!

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2 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR now available from Verizon Wireless

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It's time. You no doubt already know Motorola has brought back the RAZR brand, this time as the Motorola Droid RAZR and chances are you read our complete review if you were in any way interested in this device and if not -- you really should.

Now though, is the time to get your own. The Motorola Droid RAZR is now available on the Verizon Wireless website and ready to be shipped to you. You can pick up a Droid RAZR for $300 on a new 2-year contract or $650 with no contract at all. If you're not really feeling that price, Amazon Wireless will gladly help you out with the costs assiciated by offering it for $111.11 to new Verizon Wireless customers. Getting one? Let us know in the Android Central forums.

Source: Verizon; Amazon

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2 years ago

Firefox for Android getting an overhaul to use native Java widgets and UI, will bring better performance

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before                                                          after

Mozilla has decided to change the tools used to build the Firefox for Android client front end, and changes are in store.  In it's current iteration, Firefox uses XUL (a cross-platform toolkit used to design widgets and user interface elements), but will be switching to native Android elements written in Java.  This will bring more than just changes to the look and feel -- expect much faster load times and better performance, at the cost of some of the more complicated menus and options that are currently offered.  As you can see in the pictures above (ignore the custom font on the rooted device used by Mozilla for testing -- go root!), this will bring a UI that looks more like we're used to on Android apps, and will fit in much better once Ice Cream Sandwich rolls along.  Of coruse, the performance improvements are the big bonus, as well as (hopefully) a smaller file size.  All in all, it looks like the right way to go here from the user perspective.  Too many options can be a bad thing, and performance improvements are always welcome.  With Flash getting killed off, the Gecko rendering engine will start to look like a great option in the near future.

They will begin open Alpha testing tomorrow, we'll be sure to have a look.

Source: Dknite's blog

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2 years ago

Homerun Battle 3D, root access, and poor communication leads to knee-jerk reactions

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image credit umpire.org

Com2Us are the distributors and developers on a semi-popular game in the Android Market -- Homerun Battle 3D.  Recently, in order to try to kill the rampant cheating that goes on in the multi-player online games, they made a huge mistake.  Com2Us sent out an update that blocked anyone who had rooted their phone from playing.  As you can imagine, the uproar from people who had already spent $5 to buy the game (it's pretty well done, and this issue notwithstanding, probably worth the 5 bucks) and no longer could was instant, and loud.  We started getting reports about the issue, and started poking around to see what was up.

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2 years ago

Non-removable battery, Annoyed Samsung [From the Forums]

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Ahh, Thursday -- one day before Friday and more importantly, time for the Android Central Podcast. This weeks will be epic as always and if you're tuning in make sure you're all caught up on the news from the blogs and in the Android Central Forums.

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

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2 years ago

Asus EeePad Transformer update making its rounds, fixes app backup issues

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We've heard some runblings of a new update expected for the ASUS EeePad Transformer since the last one apparently broke a few things but there was never any mention of an ETA for it. Now is apparently the time though, as quite few people are starting to get an update labeled " 8.6.5.19-20111107" on their devices.

We've done some digging around and for the most part it just appears to be bug fixes but one welcomed change I'm sure is that the Backup app is now working again. Spot any other changes? If so let us know but for now -- go ahead and check for updates if you're unrooted, you may find it there waiting for you.

Discuss more in the Android Central Forums
Thanks, Donnieace!

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2 years ago

Verizon LTE coming to Roanoke on Nov. 17; Indiana, Penn., in December

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Verizon LTE will be coming soon to a couple new locations -- Roanoke, Virginia and Indiana Pennsylvania.  On November 17 they flip the switch in Roanoke, which will bring wireless broadband to downtown, Smith Mountain Lake, Christiansburg, Radford City, Buena Vista City, Lexington City and Rockbridge.  While it's a fairly large population center by southern Virginia standards (about 300,000 people), it's a pretty isolated metro area, and blanketing the whole community (as well as nearby Virginia Tech and the town of Blacksburg last September) is quite a trick.  Well done Verizon.

Not far behind their counterparts to the south, Indiana Pennsylvania (another fairly small college town -- do we see a trend?) will get the LTE treatment on December 15, covering Indiana, White Township, the Indiana University of PA campus, Homer City and Blairsville.  Again we see high speed mobile broadband being brought to places we would have never imagined having it two or three years ago.  Remember the next time you're paying that expensive Verizon bill -- they are actively investing that money back into their network, so your shiny Galaxy Nexus stays fast as hell in more places.  Can't fault anyone for that type of business strategy.

More: Verizon; MarketWatch

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2 years ago

Dailymotion Video Stream app announced for Android

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There is a lot of streaming video services out there these days aside from Youtube. One of the more popular ones is Dailymotion. While Dailymotion has had a web launcher app available for quite some time now, they've gone ahead and scrapped all previous versions and released Dailymotion Video Stream -- essentially, a full fledged Android app offering all of what you would expect.

A new UI is now in place, users can share videos with ease and make use of the new customizable dashboard. Plus, add channels, playlists and user search making it easier to find the content you really want.

Dailymotion Video Stream is available now in the Android Market, you'll find the download link and the full press release beyond the break. Give it go and feel free to leave some comments -- I've used the app in the past but always found it rather buggy and hopefully v2.0 will fix that.

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2 years ago

Motorola seeking out beta testers for a Motorola Electrify update

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For those of you on U.S. Cellular with a Motorola Electrify, now is possibly your chance to get in on some beta testing of the next software update for the device. Motorola is seeking out 200 U.S. Cellular customers with an Electirfy as noted on the Motorola Owners Forums:

Motorola and US Celluar are happy to announce a future pre-release* opportunity for MOTOROLA ELECTRIFY, before it is officially released to all customers. We are recruiting 200 Electrify owners to test and provide feedback on future updates.

This registration period will be open until we receive our limit of qualified applicants. Note that you must be a member of the Motorola Owners' Forums to register. If you're interested in testing and want to take part, just join our community now and then fill out the short Motorola Feedback Network registration form.  When specific opportunities become available you will receive additional info via email to register for a particular Electrify opportunity.

Please note that registering with the Motorola Feedback Network will not guarantee you'll be among those testing the software update as testers will be chosen on a first-come, first-served basis, and on valid registration responses. Selected users will receive additional information to prepare for the update via email when the trial begins.

* Motorola Software Pre-Releases are final software checks, with a limited group of users, before upgrades/updates are provided to the general public. Software tested may be no different than what other users receive, once testing is complete.

With that informarion readily available, safe to say an update will be coming for the Motorola Electrify eventually. What's not mentioned however is what the update actually is -- any guesses?

Source: Motorola
Thanks, Moto Tipster!

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2 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note review

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As 2011 draws to a close, we’ve started to see a convergence of Android phones and tablets. Honeycomb-powered tablets are available in more form factors than ever before, and smartphones are growing larger still, with 4.3- to 4.7-inch devices quickly becoming the norm. Combine that with the phone and tablet software lines being reunited in Ice Cream Sandwich, and you start to see a landscape in which there’s very little separating a large Android smartphone from a small Android tablet.

The Galaxy Note is a device which Samsung is positioning between the traditional smartphone and tablet spaces. You can make calls on it, but you’ve also got a beastly dual-core Exynos chip inside, along with Sammy’s bleeding-edge HD SuperAMOLED display tech. The manufacturer’s also included a capacitive, pressure-sensitive stylus, dubbed the “S Pen”, with optimizations for pen input throughout the software. But despite the wealth of high-end tech, is there room in the market (and your pocket) for a 5.3-inch smartphone? Read on to find out what we thought of the Samsung Galaxy Note.


Extremely fast smartphone with a beautiful screen, and a thin, light chassis considering the screen size. Pen input works well.


A 5.3-inch device will be too big for most. Note-taking focus could limit it to a niche market.



If you can get over (or even embrace) the Note's size, you'll find it's a powerful device with some unique functionality that you won't find on any other smartphone.

Inside this review

More info

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2 years ago

Key meets Kevlar on Droid RAZR

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Kevlar, as law enforcement and military personnnel have known for quite some time, is a hell of a thing, stopping bullets and saving lives. So what's it doing on the back of a smartphone? In the case of the Motorola Droid RAZR, it's serving as a pretty cool spec, and it looks darn good, too.

No, we're not going to shoot the RAZR. Pretty sure it'll lose that battle. And while it's not completely scratch-proof, it does stand up to a pretty decent amount of pressure.

Check out our complete unscientific video after the break.

Read our complete Droid RAZR review!

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