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3 years ago

Retro Olympics becomes Retro Athletics, still don't mention the Olympics

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What we see here is a perfectly innocent Android game known as Retro Athletics. But, it didn't always go by that moniker. No, sadly it seems the world has officially gone mad, as the title had to be renamed for using the 'brand' of the Olympics summer sporting occasion taking place in the UK this year. 

We're not going into politics, that's not why we're here. But, it's a pretty sad day when the Olympics summer sporting occasion taking place in the UK this year is deemed more as a brand to be infringed upon, than the global event it's meant to be. The point to note here is that should you have previously downloaded the title under its old name, it's probably a good idea to uninstall and download again from the Play Store. Seems that Google pulled the title completely, so should you want to benefit from any future updates you'll need to have this variant. 

Source: Droidgamers, Download: Retro Athletics

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3 years ago

Google Nexus 7 available at Carphone Warehouse from Friday

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Wanting to get your hands on the Google Nexus 7 in the UK, but come up empty-handed so far? Carphone Warehouse sends word that it'll be stocking the highly-anticipated (and highly-demanded) Jelly Bean tablet from this Friday, July 27. Carphone's only stocking the more expensive 16GB version, which retails for £199.99 in the UK. That's also the version that's currently sold out on Google Play, so if you want to get hold of a 16GB Nexus 7 in Old Blighty, this may be your best bet.

In addition to the option to buy an N7 outright, Carphone is also offering the ASUS-made tablet on a tethered contract, which includes a Mifi and an (undisclosed) data allowance. Normally we'd say you'd have to be a bit mad to pick up a tablet on-contract with a mobile operator, but if you're after a Mifi anyway, you could certainly do worse than picking yourself up a free Android 4.1 tablet in the process. Prices on the tethered contracts are said to start at £20.50 per month.

Check the full press release after the break, and make sure you read up on our full Nexus 7 review before parting with your cash.

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3 years ago

LG Announces Q2 2012 Financial Results

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LG just posted their Q2 2012 financial results, reporting a 46-percent year-over-year increase in net profits for the quarter. Although LG as a whole saw strong growth, the mobile division of the company didn't fare quite as well. Here's the breakdown.

  • Operating loss of KRW 57 billion (USD 49.48 million) for Q2.
  • Overall revenues down 28.5-percent year-over-year to KRW 2.32 trillion (USD 2.01 billion).
  • Smartphone shipments lifted to 44-percent of unit sales, which is up 36-percent from Q1.

LG's mobile division is hoping to improve its position in the coming quarters by leveraging their strength in LTE phones. They plan to specifically target the expanding LTE markets in North America and Europe.

You can take a look at the full press release after the break.

Source: LG Newsroom

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3 years ago

Samsung kills local search on international Galaxy S3 in 'stability' update

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There's a new over-the-air update rolling out for the international Samsung Galaxy S III (aka Galaxy S3 GT-i9300) this evening. The OTA message identifies it as a "stability update," but what it also does is remove local (on-device) search functionality in the phone's built-in Google Search app. The new version -- XXBLG6 -- is a relatively recent build, having been cooked just a few days ago on Jul. 20. A new baseband version, XXLG6, is also included, but we haven't noticed any other changes thus far.

Following legal action by Apple, which temporarily resulted in the Galaxy Nexus being banned in the U.S., Samsung has taken to pre-emptively disabling the ability to search within on-device data (like contacts and applications) on some U.S. Galaxy S3's. However, the decision to kill local search on the unlocked international model -- which isn't sold in the U.S. -- is a little perplexing, not least because Apple has yet to challenge Sammy over local search in the EU or UK, where the GT-i9300 is sold.

What's more, marking this solely as a "stability" update seems a little underhanded, as users aren't being informed that the latest OTA disables functionality which was included with their original purchase. Nevertheless, local search is now gone on the international Galaxy S3, a decision which makes Samsung's leading smartphone a little less smart. We're sure folks are working on hacking local search back in as we speak, just as we're sure Apple will pursue some other tactic in its efforts to block the S3 from sale.

If you're down with preemptively crippled search functionality, you can grab the 27MB OTA package through Samsung's software updates menu on the phone, or through the Kies desktop app.

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3 years ago

Disabling bloatware on the S3, Best pre-paid options? [From the Forums]

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Just in case you missed out on some of the Android news today, now is the time to go ahead and get yourself fully caught up. Here on the blogs and in the Android Central Forums there is plenty to talk about. Have some questions? Need some help or just looking to chat Android? You know where to go, check out some of the threads below to get started.

We've got nearly 1 million members helping members and nearly 2 million posts in our Android Forums. Are you one of them? Join today!

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3 years ago

How to: Use your USB flash drives with the Nexus 7 [root]

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One of the few negative points with the Nexus 7 for some, is the lack of any sizable on-board storage. Indeed, looking at a couple of the latest big name game titles such as Max Payne or the Amazing Spider Man further compounds the frustration. With games going well in excess of 1GB -- and even approaching 2GB -- there isn't a great deal of room left for music and videos. 

Make no mistake, we're not here to discuss the lack of microSD card. It is what it is. But, what we are here to discuss, is a way of using a USB mass storage device such as a flash drive, with your Nexus 7. Hit the break and have a look.

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3 years ago

Apple's earnings call is a sign that the lawsuits can never stop

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Apple had its quarterly earnings call today, and while looking through the news a thought hit. The financials are proof positive that the lawsuits against Android OEMs and partners can never stop. I'll admit that it sounds like I'm wearing a tinfoil hat, but if you read through the data you'll find one thing that can't be ignored -- Apple makes all of their money on mobile. Apple sells very few (relatively) laptops and desktops when compared to any of their competitors, sales of the iPod are waning, yet they keep making billions from the iPhone and iPad.

Don't be fooled by the images you see online, with rooms full of MacBooks. That's part of the tech bubble effect, and if you were to put 100 "real" people with a laptop in a room, 95 of them would be running Windows. Or 96 if you count Bootcamp. Apple surely enjoys a high profit margin on the OS X hardware they sell, but it's a niche product. That's unlikely to change in the near future. Apple's money and popularity comes from their mobile offerings -- even Steve thought so.

Back to the original thought here -- Apple can't let its hold on the mobile market slip away. Android may have a higher smartphone market share and are slowly creeping up in the tablet arena, but sales of the iPhone and iPad keep growing as well each quarter. Apple has to keep it that way, and they see how easy it would be to lose their spot in the hearts and minds of the public.

Google, and to a lesser (but not to be ignored) extent Microsoft, is slowly gaining ground on the content side. In the U.S., you can get books, magazines, movies, TV shows, music and applications for your Android products right from Google Play. It's really easy, your purchases instantly sync across multiple devices, and things are competitively priced. The real difference between Google Play and iTunes is in the content -- Apple just has more. As this gap grows smaller and smaller (and it will, Google wants your money bad enough to spend their money), there will be a point where new users will look at device features and capabilities for the deciding factor. Long-time users of either platform are less likely to switch over, as your content doesn't follow you from iOS to Android (or vice versa), but new users who aren't invested have a choice. At one point, iTunes was Apple's cash cow -- the amount and quality of the content was what many users used to make their purchasing decision -- but that will change. Even Apple can't keep Hollywood studios and music labels from wanting those Googlebucks, and eventually other countries will cave and licenses will be negotiated. It may cost Google everything it has in its war chest, but it will happen.

When the content is equal, and users look at what the device they are going to spend $700 on, features and ease-of-use become the deciding factor. Folks on the Internet will argue mindlessly about lag or quibble over pixels, but the general public sees things like widgets and pop-up video players on big screens and they are impressed. Fanboy arguments aside, looking at a Galaxy S III beside an iPhone 4S, the iOS simplistic beauty is lost on many consumers. Lost to giant weather widgets and saturated 4.8-inch SAMOLED screens. The more features Apple can have stripped away from Android devices, the better the iPhone and iPad look -- and operate.

We hate (as in hate) the smartphone wars and software patent mess that goes on across the global courts. We would love to see innovators battle each other only with innovation, because we all win with awesome new features on both platforms. But that's just never going to happen. Apple can't let it happen, and when the "next big thing" comes along to take on Android (and it will) Google can't let it happen. Money makes the world go 'round.

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3 years ago

Gameloft unveils five new free-to-play casual games for Android

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Gameloft has announced that they will be expanding their Let's Play brand with five more games launching this summer on Google Play. Let's Play is geared towards casual mobile gamers in a free-to-play (read IAP-heavy) format. The new games will be:

  • Cosmic Colony: The action unfolds on a mysterious planet where players must create and organize their colony and make it prosper. Surprising events and space missions await players of all ages as they become space pioneers.

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3 years ago

Google's Nexus Q now billed as 'in stock' and shipping in 3-5 days on Google Play

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Google has changed the availability status of the Nexus Q from "coming soon" to "in stock" (completely passing over the OMFGWTFBBQ stage we saw with the Nexus 7 models), with the qualifier that the device will be shipping out in three to five business days. With that said, we still haven't received any shipping notice about the Q we have on order, so we're still a little leery of any claims with the word soon in them. With the hearty price tag on the Q, it's a pretty good bet that we won't see the shipping and fulfillment nightmare we saw with the Nexus 7, as folks just aren't lined up to spend three hundred bucks on a cannonball that plays your Google Music.

Anyhoo, if you're thinking of picking one of these up, now is your chance while they are in stock and available. Your three Benjamins will get you a solid and well built musical orb with unlimited potential in the right hands. And it makes a sexy lightshow when you reset it.

Source: Google Play

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3 years ago

Roaming in Europe - the definitive UK network guide

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In the past, traveling from the UK to mainland Europe could've landed you with a massive, unforeseen roaming bill. The EU recently imposed roaming price caps on European carriers, though, and as such, the major UK networks have been stepping up with a range of new roaming deals offering everything from inclusive minutes and data to reduced per-minute rates and even unlimited data in certain cases.

But there information from each individual carrier is often tricky to track down, and it's not always easy to know which network offers the best rate for your individual needs. That's why we've scoured the 'tubes for all the latest roaming rates and deals from the UK's leading mobile networks, and put them all in one place, along with a little guidance on which network might have the best roaming package for you.

If you're making the trip from the UK to Europe this summer, you'll definitely want to check out our definitive UK network roaming guide after the break.

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3 years ago

How to set lock screen and security options on Galaxy S3

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With NFC and all your personal information, its time to keep your Galaxy S3 safe from potential thieves and peeping neighbors. 

It is much more convenient not to use security options on your Samsung Galaxy S III (S3) or other Android phone. However, this is sort of like playing Russian roulette with your data and personal information.

Imagine if you lost your phone and someone was able to access everything inside. What would you lose? What would the “ripple effects” be? Could your bank information be compromises? Your credit? In today’s day and age we just can’t take a chance of our sensitive information falling into the wrong hands.

Fortunately, the Galaxy S3 offers some easy and powerful built-in tools to help keep you phone, your information and your peace of mind safe and secure.

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3 years ago

Nexus 7 display goes dark at boot? Check the auto-brightness

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This is one of those simple things that'll leave you kicking yourself, but that doesn't make it any less important. Noznarf in our Nexus 7 forums writes:

Just got my Nexus 7 yesterday and i've encountered a problem already. I charged the device for a couple of hours and was excited to start it up.

As soon as i started the device, I got the Google logo, followed by the Nexus symbol, and then just a black screen. I've tried rebooting in recovery mode to no avail.

When I press and hold the power button for 10+ seconds the Google screen will show, then some 10 seconds afterwards you gets the multi-coloured Nexus symbol and then nothing happens again.

The fix is simple enough, as dparrothead1 points out. You're not stuck in a bootloop. There's nothing wrong with the display. All you have to do is struggle through the setup and fix the auto brightness in the settings. Nicely done.

We've got nearly 1 million members helping members and nearly 2 million posts in our Android Forums. Are you one of them? Join today!

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3 years ago

Verizon HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE review

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The Droid Incredible 4G LTE is a solid phone on Verizon with a ridiculously long name.

It's easy to dismiss Verizon's new Droid Incredible 4G LTE. It's easy to look at the specs on paper, glance over at the HTC One line, shake your head and move on. After all, DInc 4G LTE, in addition to having a ridiculously long name that reads more like a spec list than anything else (seriously, Verizon -- stop it), isn't a member of the HTC 2012 Cool Club, whose ranks include the One X, One S and One V.

The Incredible (we're going to call it that from here on out -- have we mentioned how ridiculous its full name is?) lives in a sort of middle region. It's an obvious successor to the DInc 2, which we reviewed last year. But for as good as its hardware is, it's missing a few features that would otherwise put it on the top shelf. On the other hand, in shines in a few places where other phones don't as well.

So keep on keeping' on for our full Droid Incredible 4G LTE review.

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3 years ago

New renders pop up for the rumored LG Spectrum 2 on Verizon

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It was only a couple of weeks ago that we found photos and a service manual leak for the rumored LG Spectrum 2 on Verizon. Now some renders have popped up for the second version of one of LG's flagship phones in the United States.

The Spectrum 2 will be packing a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 4.7-inch IPS display, 16GB of storage, 1GB RAM, Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich), and a 8MP rear-facing camera.

Source: TechnoBuffalo

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3 years ago

Dungeon Hunter 3 adds multiplayer support

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Gameloft's free fantasy hack-and-slash game, Dungeon Hunter 3, now lets players team up or duke it out online with new co-op and competitive multiplayer modes. 

As usual, you chose one of multiple standard classes, and defend against waves of monsters for as long as your weapons, armor, and powers will allow you. 

As with most of Gameloft's free titles, this one's rife with in-app purchases, but I never found them particularly intrusive in the time that I put into Dungeon Hunter 3. To start slaying some dragons with buddies, hit up the download link below. 

Download: Dungeon Hunter 3 (Free)

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