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3 years ago

ASUS Fonepad now available from Three UK

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£29.99 up-front plus £12.49 per month, or £179.99 outright

British mobile operator Three has today launched the ASUS Fonepad on its network. The 7-inch Intel-powered Android tablet/phone hybrid is available for £179.99 outright when bought with a £5, £7.50 and £15 data top-up, or £29.99 up-front on a 24-month, £12.49 per month contract.

So Three is positioning the device as a tablet rather than an Android phone, which is probably a good thing considering its enormous size. Here's what Richard Devine had to say in our review of the Fonepad —

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3 years ago

ZENS Wireless Single Charger review

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ZENS is taking Qi charging to the next level in style and function

 

I've been looking at Qi wireless chargers here lately, and every time the subject comes up someone wants to know more about the ZENS charger. We've all heard good things, and often enough that it was evident I needed to get one and have a look. I've used plenty of them, had some varying results, but I had never heard anything bad about the ZENS unit. At ShopAndroid.com, it has a solid five star rating after 26 reviews.

I think I understand why, after using one for a few days.

There's no secret, it's a Qi compatible coil housed in a casing that rests quietly on your desk or nightstand. As long as the Qi standard is followed faithfully (looking at you, first-run Nexus 4 and your weird issues in this area), setting a Qi compatible device on top of the coil should charge it. The Zens charger does just that, but someone put a little thought behind the rest of the unit.

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3 years ago

Samsung Apps to offer BBM for Android

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Release confirmed for Africa on all Galaxy smartphones

Samsung has announced that it'll offer the Android version of BlackBerry's BBM messaging app upon its release. A press release issued today confirmed that BBM will be "available to all Samsung GALAXY smartphone consumers across Africa" on Google Play as well as Samsung's own app store. And while today's presser refers to Africa specifically, it's likely Samsung owners in other territories (not to mention other Android device owners) will be able to download the app too.

Samsung also states that BBM "will form part of Samsung Messaging Hub" on Galaxy devices, suggesting some kind of deeper integration with the built-in Messaging app may be on the cards.

There's still no word on exactly when BBM for Android (or iOS) will appear, but it's understood to be in beta testing right now, so the public release probably isn't far off.

Source: CrackBerry

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3 years ago

Catch our Moto X special edition podcast!

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Welcome to the start of another work week here in the U.S. In case you missed it last week, we recorded a special-edition Moto X podcast shortly after attending the launch event in New York City. It's all Moto X, all the time. 

We'll get back to our regularly scheduled podcast this week, so enjoy the saturation while it lasts!

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3 years ago

Samsung Unpacked event set for September 4 - Galaxy Note 3 inbound

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New Note device strongly hinted for pre-IFA Samsung event in Berlin

It's been rumored, and now we now for sure. Samsung is hosting an Unpacked event in Berlin, Germany on September 4 just before the annual IFA show begins in the city. The star of the show? Looking at this we're certainly looking at a new Galaxy Note device, possibly the Note 3. On the same day too, Samsung will be hosting an experience in New York City, for those not able to get to Berlin.

Samsung has used a pre-IFA event for the past two years to unveil the first two Galaxy Note smartphones, so the third generation model has long been expected for the same treatment. Whatever happens though, we'll be on the ground in Berlin next month to bring you the whole thing.

Check out the invite after the break.

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3 years ago

LG G2 manual leak reveals rear buttons, nano-SIM, microSD slot

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The LG G2 is almost upon us, and we'll be live from New York City this Wednesday for LG's big announcement event. Between LG's pre-launch announcements and a healthy flow of leaks, we already know a reasonable amount about the G2, however a leak of the device's manual has a couple more secrets to spill.

Firstly, cluster of buttons on the back of the device is confirmed to contain volume up, volume down and a power button — not a fingerprint reader as had been speculated. In addition, the manual shows a nano-SIM slot, making the G2 only the third Android phone to support this standard. (After the ASUS Padfone Infinity and the recently-announced Moto X.)

Also revealed are a microSD slot for expandable storage, and a removable 2610mAh battery.

The LG G2 may no longer be much of a mystery, but we're looking forward to finally getting our hands on the phone this Wednesday regardless. Keep it locked to AC for full coverage.

Source: Nowhereelse.fr; via: Engadget

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3 years ago

Could Samsung's smartwatch be the 'Galaxy Gear?'

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Trademark application specifically mentions wearable devices and wristwatches

Samsung has made no secret of the fact that it's working on its own smartwatch, and in recent days the Korean press has been reporting that the device could make an appearance at a Berlin event in September ahead of IFA 2013. Today brings the first news of a possible name for the device, as the Korean company has filed a trademark application for "Samsung Galaxy Gear" at the United States Patents and Trademarks Office.

The application specifies that the mark would be used in relation to —

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3 years ago

Feedly Pro unveiled: Article search, HTTPS, Evernote save and more

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$5 per month or $45 per year; early adopters can get Feedly Pro for life today for $99

With the demise of Google Reader, Feedly has emerged as one of the main players in the RSS world. Today it's announcing a premium reader service, which includes many frequently-requested features that are absent from the free version. Feedly Pro subscribers will get the ability to search within feeds, just like in the Google Reader days, HTTPS browsing for added security, and one-click saving to Evernote. What's more, pro users are promised "premium support" should they run into any difficulties.

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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Tablet Z Android 4.2 update now rolling out

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4G LTE version of Sony tablet first to get the 4.2 update

Sony recently promised Android 4.2 for the Xperia Tablet Z in early August, and now the updates are beginning to roll out, starting with the 4G LTE version of the tablet — model number SGP-321. The Tablet Z LTE is getting a firmware update to version 10.3.1.A.0.244, which according to XperiaBlog is the same build how hitting Xperias Z, ZL and ZR. The update juggles around the on-screen controls, moving them to the middle of the system bar in the typical Android 4.2 style. And there's now a traditional notification bar up top, too. Similarly, you'll now find quick settings in the notification shade, just like on a Sony smartphone.

We'd also expect to see Android 4.2 features like lock screen widgets, Daydreams and multiple user accounts on the tablet, though we have no specific information on whether they're included or not.

Posts on the XDA forums reveal that while some users are getting the upgrade already, many aren't — so it seems we may be looking at a staged rollout for this particular update. If you've got an Xperia Tablet Z, be sure to check for OTA updates and new firmware via the PC Companion app or Bridge for Mac. Let us know how you get on down in the comments.

Source: XperiaBlog; XDA

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3 years ago

From the editor's Desk: Chromecast a go-go

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I think I just saved $500 by spending $35.

I'll most likely be canceling my Xbox One subscription this week. It's not that I wouldn't love to have one — I loathe that aging, noisy beast that's currently in my living room. But it's getting harder and harder to justify that much money on some that's mostly been replaced by a $35 USB-powered dongle. No, I won't be playing hardcore games with it, and it doesn't get anywhere near replacing Kinect. But I think I'm going to be replacing my old Xbox with a cheap Blu-Ray player and calling it a day.

But maybe the most important part of Chromecast is one that's gotten short shrift in nearly every review I've read, including ours. Chromecast is in its infancy. Having an SDK — software development kit — means that anyone and everyone can essentially write an app for it. Koushik Dutta — the developer behind ClockwordMod recoveries and Helium backup (to name but two projects) has been teasing a few on Google+. Streaming local files from a phone or tablet. Streaming files from Dropbox. Streaming files from RSS (and wrapping them in individual channel UIs).

And that's just one developer.

Reviews of devices are great. But it's important to remember that Chromecast is just getting started, with the SDK currrently available as a developer preview. It'll be interesting to how the ecosystem grows. You can't yet distribute Chromecast apps. Will it be a walled garden? Wide open like Android? I imagine anything that plays alongside DRM-enabled apps like Netflix will have a bit of oversight along with it.

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3 years ago

AC on the road: What's in Jerry's gear bag

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It's been a while since any of us here at AC talked about what's in our bag and on our desks, so I decided to have a frosty beverage or two and do a little sharing. We're in a great situation for an Android fan to be in around these parts, and with all the review units, loaners, stuff Phil send to us to learn and try and the stuff we swap amongst ourselves we pretty much have our choice of selection of smartphones and accessories. It's one of the best perks of one of the best jobs I've ever had, and trust me — I know how lucky we all are because of it.

For now, let's ignore the fact that working for Android Central means we have a pile of great Android devices that we go to frequently, and discuss the ones we use by choice — the ones we gladly paid full price for if we had to. Think of this as our personal best list, and the stuff we would choose if we were forced to choose. I'm kicking this round off, but you'll hear from each of us in turn.

A few quick words of wisdom before anyone clicks through. This is what I like. There is no right and wrong here, and my list probably won't match anyone else's. That's a good thing. The world would be a pretty boring (and scary as hell) place if everyone thought like me. 

OK, ready? Let's go.

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3 years ago

HTC One Max for Chinese market pictured

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A bigger screen and faster processor set the one Max apart from the current HTC One models

A Chinese variant of the HTC One Max has been spotted by the folks at ePrice. Looking very much like the HTC One the world already knows, the Max (also known as the T6) does have some key differences. Besides the removable back cover, dual-SIM variation, and SD card support we would expect in an Asian version, the processor and screen have both received a major bump compared to the current model. The HTC One Max is said to have a Snapdragon 800 running at 2.3GHz, and carry a 5.9-inch screen. 

We're not sure how closely this will resemble any models that may be released in the west, but we know a lot of folks are interested in what HTC is doing with the bigger One. There's another picture after the break, and some pricing and availability speculation (spoiler: Asia) at the source link.

Source: ePrice

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3 years ago

Getting the most out of Google Now voice actions

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'Remind me to use Google Now more often'

Google Now gets more and more powerful every day, which is aided by the fact that much of the processing it does is handed off to a Google data center over the Internet. Aside from the inherent issues when you don't have connectivity, this gives Google Now a ton of capability in terms of voice recognition, and lets Google add new capabilities without pushing app updates.

We've all played around with the standard voice actions in Google Now — making calls, sending text messages and performing searches — back when it was just "Google Search", but there are so many more things that it can do for you. While there are dozens of different voice actions available, we've compiled a list of several that can truly be incorporated into your daily life.

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3 years ago

Win a box of AC swag!

It's the weekend, the bosses take the day off, and Michelle and I have cooked an awesome little plan where we're gonna give away three boxes full of random Android Central swag!

There may be a t-shirt, there may be stickers, there may be a coffee mug, pens, sticky notes or any manner of great AC stuff crammed into a box and sent to your door. We've got a big pile of it, and the best thing to do when you have a pile of cool stuff is to share some of it.

Want to try and win one of the boxes? That's the easy part. Make sure you registered at AC with a real email address. If we pick you, we need to know how to get in contact with you. If you didn't and we pick your name, we'll never know where to send your loot and we have to give it to someone else. That would totally suck, so make sure it doesn't happen. 

Once you've done that, just leave a comment below. At 11:59 PM Pacific time Sunday night, we'll shut it down and pick three winners at random. All that's left for you to do is check your email and see if you were one of them.

Ready? Set? Go!

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3 years ago

Vine update adds notifications and Facebook sharing

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Post sharing still limited to just Facebook and Twitter.

An update to the 6-second video sharing service Vine is adding new activity notifications and sharing intents. If you choose to have them turned on, you will now receive push notifications whenever someone likes, comments or mentions you in a Vine post. Notifications can be managed in the standard ways of choosing your ringtone and toggling whether or not to have vibrations or a notification LED for notifications. Naturally, you can turn them off completely as well.

This latest update also adds proper sharing directly to Twitter or Facebook from the app. Just hit the menu button below a Vine that you want to share, and you'll be given "Share on Twitter" and "Share on Facebook" options. Although we would prefer if Vine just used the standard Android sharing intent to let you share Vine links to any app, this is a good start.

You can grab a download or update to the latest Vine app from the Play Store link above.

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