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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Express goes global - mid-ranger with 4G LTE, SuperAMOLED Plus

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Update: Samsung's gotten in touch to tell us that the Galaxy Express will launch in the UK during the first half of the year.

It's the time of year when Samsung traditionally announces new mid-range products, and today it's the turn of the Galaxy Express to emerge into the international spotlight, following its AT&T debut last year. With a Galaxy S3-like design, 4G LTE connectivity and a 4.5-inch (WVGA resolution) SuperAMOLED Plus display, this device brings a small but significant increase in hardware muscle over the much-hyped Galaxy S3 mini.

Other notable specs include an unnamed 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM and TouchWiz'd Android 4.1 Jelly Bean under the hood. Camera-wise, there's a 5MP shooter on the back, as well as a 1.3MP front-facer. And 8GB of built-in storage is included, expandable via microSD. That's all powered by a 2000mAh battery, a fair size for a device of this kind.

There's no solid info on release plans for the Galaxy Express, but given Samsung's lack of a budget 4G offering for the European market, we're hoping we'll see it in Europe first. For more on the Galaxy Express, check out our hands-on coverage of the AT&T version. We've also got video embedded after the break.

Source: Samsung

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3 years ago

Nexus 4 shows up for sale on Best Buy's website, T-Mobile contract in tow

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The Nexus 4 has just show up for sale on Best Buy's website, with familiar T-Mobile on-contract pricing of $199.99. In typical Best Buy fashion, the off-contract price of the phone has been inflated, showing $599.99 to buy the device outright. This is something Best Buy (and other retailers) does to both cover its overhead and most importantly compel people to sign 2-year contracts, and is nothing new for the Nexus 4.

This isn't likely to be any special deal between Google and Best Buy to offer the device though, as you can bet that Google would rather secure supply for its own store before branching out to yet another retailer. This is probably just T-Mobile's current deals to resell handsets and service with Best Buy extending to the new handset. New stock heading to a wider range of T-Mobile stores means it is ready to also let resellers sell the device on its behalf.

Although not many people are likely to head to Best Buy to pick it up, the Nexus 4 is certainly getting a little more exposure as these new listings arrive. Let's just hope that Google can get its own supply channels sorted out so it can offer the device through the Play Store once again.

Source: Best Buy

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3 years ago

How to enable system sounds on your Android device

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Part of having a modern smartphone is the media experience. Today's Android phones rival about any desktop system when it comes to audio and visual cues for the way you interact with them. Case in point -- audible alerts for system UI actions.

Making your Android phone or tablet give you an affirming "tick" when you press a button or unlock your screen is easy. Open your settings, and find the "Sound" entry in the menu list. You'll see something like the above, where you can set the standard ringtone and notification. If you scroll down a bit you'll see where you can enable or disable the audible prompt when doing things like dialing a number, or unlocking your phone. What's really cool is that you can set these sounds individually, so your phone only makes the noises you want it to make.

Once you have things set up the way you like, just press the back button and leave the settings menu. Now you're set!

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3 years ago

Republic Wireless' Motorola Defy XT getting a software update

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The Republic Wireless Defy XT should be getting a software update this evening, and it will address the two biggest issues with the phone. I've been giving the service a run to see how it compares, and the two big drawbacks seem to be sound quality, and not being able to send a text while on Wifi. Both these issues are said to be fixed with this update, as well as Wifi enhancements and bug fixes.

The OTA is slated to begin rolling out at 6PM ET, and Republic says you'll need to be on Wifi with 50-percent or higher battery power still available to get it. 

While Republic is more about disrupting the current telecommunications mess the US is in with low priced service than they are fancy cutting edge devices, it's nice to see them not let the little Defy languish away with bugs. If you're using the service, be sure to check for updates if you don't get a push notification.

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3 years ago

3D printing and NFC make a great looking Nexus 4 dock

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We're all waiting for someone to sell that fancy orb docking station for the Nexus 4. In the meantime, ingenuity never rests and this 3D printed dock would make an awesome substitute. It uses a standard USB cable for charging, and an NFC sticker to trigger the NFC Task Launcher app to drop it into dock mode.

If you have access to a 3D printer, be sure to give this one a good look. And if you make any extra ones, give me a yell so I can throw my money at you.

Source: Thingiverse; via Android Central forums

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3 years ago

Google Wallet updated with new UI, performance improvements

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Google Wallet is getting a facelift today with its latest update, bringing a smoother UI and some under the hood improvements as well. The interface now more closely follows the holo UI guidelines, with navigation tabs along the top of the interface and an overflow settings button to hold all extra functions. You're no longer greeted by a list of all available cards, as they are now all housed one more tap away under the "My Wallet" tab with only your default card displayed. There is a button to go directly to "My Offers" from the first page, and new offers can be found from the "Explore" tab on the main page.

The update also brings some nondescript "improvements to the user interface, application stability, and battery life." Although no specifics are listed, these are all good improvements that although aren't as noticeable at first as a new UI make a big difference in the quality of the app.

The Google Wallet app has undergone several visual changes since its launch, and this is probably the best of the bunch. Head to the Play Store and check out the latest update if you have a compatible device, or stick around after the break for a few screenshots of the new UI.

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3 years ago

Ouya developers create 166 game prototypes at 'game jam' event

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Ouya got its developer consoles out to eager Kickstarter backers on time, and now these devs are putting themselves to work creating game prototypes for the console. In a partnership with Kill Screen, the folks at Ouya hosted a "game jam" to get developers interested in making new games for the platform. The jam produced 166 different game prototypes in just 10 days -- quite a feat for any platform -- and the games will go on to be judged and awarded prizes. The Ouya team says that its software kit for developing games has already been downloaded 22,000 times by developers.

Those are some pretty impressive numbers, and the console hasn't even been released to the general public yet. We hope these early game prototypes are a sign of good things to come for Ouya once consoles are in the hands of regular consumers. You can see a full list of the games created during the game jam at the second source link below.

Source: Ouya (Kickstarter)Kill Screen Daily

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3 years ago

Mophie Juice Pack for the Galaxy S3

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The Mophie Juice Pack for the Galaxy S3 doubles your phone's battery life - but at quite the cost in this case

 

I have no qualms about admitting my lust for the iPhone's Mophie Juice Pack battery case. My wife's used one with her iPhone, and it's a great combination of extra juice and protection in a form factor that doesn't kill the overall feel of the phone. We've looked at a couple of Galaxy S3 battery cases here before -- the Powerskin Battery Case and the Droidax Power Pack. Neither of them were bad cases, but neither of them had the name recognition and legacy of Mophie. 

So now that we've got a Mophie for the GS3 in our hot little hands, how's it shaking out? Read on for the full skinny.

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3 years ago

SwiftKey Flow gets a new beta with more predictions, easier corrections

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Swiftkey today unleashed a new version of its beta-only SwiftKey Flow keyboard. Corrections are easier, predictions are more prevalent -- and it's basically just more awesome. 

Hit up the VIP forums to get your download on. We've got the full changelog after the break.

Download: Swiftkey Flow

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3 years ago

Sony 'HuaShan' shots leak - Xperia Z's mid-range sibling

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Sony traditionally showcases its mid-range products at Mobile World Congress, and it looks like this year's offering is the C5303 "HuaShan." The HuaShan -- named after one of China's great five mountains -- has appeared for the first time in leaked shots from German site USP Forum. And on the whole, it looks like a cheaper version of the recently-announced Xperia Z. We're still dealing with an unassuming rounded rectangle design, and the Xperia Z's signature power button can be seen on the right edge, along with a dedicated camera key.

The back appears to be furnished in black soft-touch plastic, with a central camera protruding slightly from the chassis. It's an altogether more plasticky affair than the Xperia Z, which sandwiches its components between two sheets of glass.

According to early benchmark information, it looks like this device is packing a 1.7GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU (compared to the Xperia Z's 1.5GHz quad-core) and running at a screen resolution of 1280x720, with on-screen buttons. One of today's shots shows Android 4.1.2 running on the phone, same as its high-end counterpart.

Assuming Sony chooses to unveil its mid-range stuff at MWC -- and there are enough letters left in its alphabetic naming scheme -- we'll be live from Barcelona next month with full coverage. 

More pics after the break.

Source: USP forum; via: PhoneArena

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3 years ago

Cameringo - another way to get filters onto your pictures

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Cameringo is yet another entry into the photo filter game, and has some features that can help set it apart from other photo apps. Since Instagram made its way to Android, there has been an increasing flood of apps that put filters on top of photos -- for better or worse, depending on who you ask. Cameringo makes the likely smart move to not go head-to-head with Instagram's styling and social networking aspects, and instead just offers a set of useful settings and photo filters that make it compelling in other ways.

Read on past the break to see what Cameringo has to offer.

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3 years ago

Boston leads latest round of Sprint LTE expansions

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Sprint this morning announced an expansion to its fledgling 4G LTE network. New up is:

  • Austin, Texas
  • Bryan-College Station, Texas
  • Boston, Mass.
  • Columbia, Tenn.
  • Emporia, Kan.
  • Fort Wayne, Ind.
  • Framingham, Mass.
  • Gettysburg, Pa.
  • Western Puerto Rico

You'll need a relatively newer Sprint smartphone to take advantage of the LTE speeds, of course.

Source: Sprint

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3 years ago

Samsung goes red with the Galaxy Tab 2 7.0

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Samsung has announced that the Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 is available in garnet red this week at participating retailers. It runs $219.99 and comes with a free matching garnet red case. Samsung's 7-incher is running Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, sports a dual-core processor and has an IR port tucked away in there, too. The limited edition red version is available from Walmart, Amazon.com, Office Depot, Fry's, Tiger Direct and Toys R Us, among other retailers. 

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3 years ago

Sprint announces the rugged Kyocera Torque

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Sprint this morning announced the Kyocera Torque, a ruggedized Android smartphone that sports LTE data as well as Sprint's Direct Connect push-to-talk service. The Torque sports a 4-inch display at 480x800 resolution, a 2,500 mAh battery and is running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It's powered by a 1.2GHz Qualcomm MSM8960 dual-core processor, has 4GB of storage and 1GB of RAM, and can rock a microSD card as well. It's also got NFC, Wifi b/g/n, a 5MP rear camera and a 1.3MP shooter out front. The whole thing's built to 810G MilSpec standards, meaning it'll probably survive in hostile conditions longer than you would. 

No word yet on pricing or when it will be available.

Source: Sprint

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