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3 years ago

Loewe unveils Speaker 2go, portable Bluetooth and NFC capable speaker available in June

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Premium portable from German manufacturer Loewe to go on sale in June priced at £269

Anyone familiar with high-end home entertainment equipment will no doubts be aware of Loewe. Their products come with a price, but are always targeted towards the higher end of the market. They have dabbled in mobile compatible devices before, recently with the iOS AirPlay enabled AirSpeaker. Now though, they have pulled the wraps off their debut portable, Bluetooth and NFC enabled speaker -- the Speaker 2go. 

On sale in the UK from June, the Speaker 2go is priced at £269. Despite being a portable, it houses two full speakers, a woofer and a 'specially folded' bass reflex tube with a total of 40 Watts of music power. The on-board batteries provide enough juice for a claimed 8 hours use between charges. 

Beyond music, the Speaker 2go also has an on-board microphone with echo cancellation, meaning that you can turn the Speaker 2go into an ad-hoc speakerphone system where you are. 

The NFC capabilities mean that pairing your NFC enabled Android device to the Speaker 2go is a doddle, with the Bluetooth connection being enabled upon contact. 5 devices can be remembered for automatic connection, and the wireless range is up to 10 metres, handy for using it outside, perhaps. 

Speaker 2go will come in 2 colors -- black and silver -- and for more click on past the break for the full press release.

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3 years ago

AT&T LG Optimus G Pro now up for pre-order

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5.5-incher costs $199.99 on contract, ships May 7

Right on schedule, AT&T has begun taking pre-orders for the LG Optimus G Pro. The 5.5-inch device, which rocks a Snapdragon 600 CPU and a 1080p screen, is yours for $199.99 on a standard two-year contract or $549.99 on its own. AT&T's site reveals a May 7 shipping date, so pre-order customers may well get their phones a little ahead of the previously-announced May 10 launch date.

In our March review of the Korean Optimus G Pro, as well as our more recent hands-on with AT&T's version, we've found the device to be a worthy competitor to Samsung's Note series, which has so far dominated the large form factor space.

If you're wanting to place a pre-order today, you can do so over at the source link.

Source: AT&T

More: AT&T Optimus G Pro hands-on, Korean Optimus G Pro review

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S4, other Knox devices approved for U.S. Dept. of Defense networks

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Samsung smart devices get the Pentagon's stamp of approval

Update: Samsung's just passed along an official press release, which states that the DoD approval applies to both smartphones and tablets running Knox. You'll find the full presser after the break.

Original story: The Samsung Galaxy S4 has been approved for use on the U.S. Department of Defense's secure networks, Korea's Yonhap news agency reports. The news follows announcements by the DoD indicating plans to open its networks up to Android and iOS-based smart devices by next February.

Samsung has been keen to advance into the secure smartphone market in recent months, a space traditionally dominated by BlackBerry devices. The company's new Samsung Knox security system for BYOD, aimed at enterprise and government customers, is a major part of this push.

In related news, BlackBerry's latest BlackBerry 10 phones and its PlayBook tablet were also approved for DoD use yesterday. The Next Web reports that Apple's iPhone and iPad should gain DoD approval later this month.

Source: Yonhap; via: The Next Web

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3 years ago

Google Play coming to Nook HD and Nook HD+

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Barnes and Noble team up with Google, will significantly increase the availability of apps for both Nook HD tablets

While the Barnes & Noble Nook HD and Nook HD+ each have access to the B&N online stores for books and apps, tonight CEO William Lynch has announced that with an update due to start rolling out today, the Google Play store will be added to the 7-inch and 9-inch tablets.

We saw coming off holiday the market moved to multifunction tablets. Consumer research showed us the breadth of applications available is really critical.

The update will be a standard automatic over-the-air affair, and will include plenty of other Google services as well. Confirmed are Chrome browser, Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps and Google Play Music. 

The tablets are moderately spec'd by today's standards, but are also moderately priced at $199 for the 7-inch Nook HD and $269 for the 9-inch Nook HD+. We're not sure that the addition of Google's apps and services will generate new sales, but they should be welcome additions for everyone who purchased one last year.

If you're using a Nook HD, be sure to share your experiences with everyone once you get the update!

Via: Huffington Post

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3 years ago

Room 237 is a movie for movie buffs - and available in Google Play

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Cook some Jiffy Pop and keep that tin foil for a hat -- Room 237 is 100 minutes of thought-provoking conspiracy theories

With no podcast tonight, I've been forced to find something else to occupy my idle hands. A quick trip into Google Play found the film Room 237, and halfway through I'm hooked.

Without any spoilers, it dissects Stanley Kubrick's take on The Shining into a million tiny slices, and analyzes it all with a keen eye for detail -- and conspiracy theories abound. Half of what I'm hearing sounds absolutely insane, but all of it sounds interesting as heck. Well worth the $7, and I didn't have to get dressed and head to the theater.

Remember, there's more to Google Play than just apps if you're in a country that supports all the content. If you're bored, or a film enthusiast I think you'll like this one. 

Rent Room 237 from Google Play

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3 years ago

Halo feature from Paranoid Android team demoed in video

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Facebook's Chat Heads feature taken to the next level with the Halo mod

For many folks, half the fun of having an Android phone or tablet is hacking the daylights out of it. For the average user, that means installing custom tweaks and ROMs. For the developer types, though, it means something different. They get inside things, and twist everything around until they get it all the way they like. Here's a great example of that.

The folks hard at work on the Paranoid Android ROM have been teasing a new feature, and today we get a four-minute glimpse of Halo.

Think Chat Heads on steroids. It's an entirely new way of handling notifications, and it looks pretty slick. Trun it on from the status bar, and your notifications appear in a small circular icon and flyout. Tap said icon, and whatever you might be doing will pause, and a small version of the application that gave you a notification will open, allowing you to respond appropriately.

There's no public release available yet, but word is you'll soon be able to try it yourself. We'll keep an eye out for this one.

Thanks, David!

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3 years ago

Mystery Motorola device leaked with AT&T apps on board, labeled XFON

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Habitual leakers @evleaks have popped out yet another unannounced phone, but one we may have seen before

We're all waiting to see what Google and Motorola show the world this year. We've got high expectations, and a little solid information about the companies goals, but nothing firm about the Android devices they will certainly bring to the table. While plenty of rumors and (often silly) speculation about the X Phone project are everywhere, here's one that's a bit more down to earth -- with pictures.

Looking very much like the mysterious Motorola phone we saw from Vietnam last month, todays leak has AT&T plastered all over it. Ignoring the AT&T carrier logo in the status bar (that's written based on the SIM card you're using), we can spy a couple of AT&T applications in the app drawer and the LTE icon matches what AT&T has been using for quite a while. 

The device is in some sort of "fake" shell so we don't get a very good look at things, but a second picture (find it after the break) shows what looks like a carbon fiber back plate -- something we're used to seeing from Motorola -- and the words XFON ATT used for the model number. Could this be the X Phone so many are waiting for? 

Source: @evleaks

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3 years ago

Mophie Juice Pack for the HTC One - the full review

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Mophie's usual quality shines through with this HTC One battery case, but you've got to be prepared for a major increase in size

Let's get this out of the way: The Mophie Juice Pack takes the svelte HTC One and bulks it up. A lot. It's a big case full of battery -- 2,500 mAh, to be precise -- that takes an already lanky phone, makes it even taller and fills it out like a blogger at a buffet. You need to know this before hefting this the Juice Pack.

But those of use who have used the Juice Packs before know that this is the trade-off for having a combination case and battery, an amalgamation that was made popular by the iPhone and has become that much more important as more phone manufacturers seal the batteries inside.

And now we've got a Mophie Juice Pack for the HTC One. Our thoughts, after the break.

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3 years ago

Angry Birds Friends flies into the Play Store

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Fling various birds at pigs in structures... now with your friends

Just as we expected, Angry Birds Friends hit the Play Store this morning as a free download, ready for you to challenge your Facebook friends to some intense tournaments. If you haven't played the browser-based version yet, the concept is pretty simple. You have access to all of the varieties of birds you know and love, but now you compete with your friends to make the highest score every round. There are weekly challenges with new levels in each, as well as individual challenges with friends for trophies, and various ways to brag to your friends about how well you're doing.

This is going to require a Facebook login (no way around that), but if you're interested in mixing up your Angry Birds play time this may be a good way to go. You can grab a download of the game for free from the Play Store at the link above, or if you need a refresher on your Angry Birds skills there are plenty of previous versions to choose from. The app has just now hit the Amazon Appstore in several countries as well, so those of you on a Kindle Fire can grab your free download at the source link below.

More: Amazon Appstore

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3 years ago

Instagram adds account tagging, 'Photos of You' album

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Remember everything about a photo by tagging friends involved

Instagram has updated its app to v3.5 today bringing the notable feature of photo tagging to both Android and iOS concurrently. While hashtags have been a staple of posting on Instagram, you can now choose to tag any of your friends in photos as well. After you're done taking, cropping and applying filters to a photo, tapping a tag button lets you select people (or items) in the picture to mark as those people. You can add any of your friends, but also other accounts you follow such as a restaurant or a sports team. Only the person who took the photo can tag others, which helps keep spam down considerably.

On the other side, if someone tags you in a photo it will now show up in your profile as "Photos of You" for you -- or anyone else -- to see all in one place. If you would prefer to review each tag before it is posted publicly, you can change your settings to prevent unwanted tags. The update is now live in the Play Store, so go grab your download from the link at the top of this post.

More: Instagram

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3 years ago

Verizon Galaxy Note II getting Android 4.1.2 today

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If you've got a Verizon Galaxy Note 2, you should now have an update to Android 4.1.2 waiting for you. Thanks to Roustermiller in the Android Central forums, we have the build.prop information:

  • Android 4.1.2
  • Baseband version I605VRAMC3
  • Kernel version 3.0.31-1098177
  • Build number JZO54K.I605VRAMC3

Head over to the update thread for changes posted as they are found. We'll update this post when we get more information from Verizon.

And here's the full changelog:

  • Download images via Enterprise Exchange email
  • Download ring back tones through VZTones version 5.1.2 preloaded application 
  • Access downloaded languages on the Samsung keyboard
  • Use Multi Window support for more applications
  • (YouTube, Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon Kindle, Viewdini, Google Maps and Talk)
  • Search or filter by Name in the dialer screen
  • The snooze option in the Alarm Clock app is set to “ON” by default
  • All Alarm Clock options are now viewable without the need to press the “more” button
  • Added a Notification Panel editing menu under Display Settings
  • Transfer content from your old device seamlessly with the
  • Samsung Smart Switch application, now supported

Source: Verizon (pdf); More: Android Central Forums

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3 years ago

Zappos improves payment and account management in latest update

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Quickly view orders and edit payment information from your phone

Zappos has just released its v3.0 update in the Play Store with a few welcomed back-end features to help the experience of shopping on a mobile device. While most of the interface remains unchanged save for a few minor usability tweaks, the real improvements can be found in the "My Account" settings. With the latest update, you can now add and edit any aspect of both payment methods and shipping addresses associated with your account, so they're ready to go the next time you need to make a purchase quickly.

 

Credit cards can also now be simply nicknamed and color-coded to make sure you never make the wrong choice when checking out. The order history page has also received a facelift, with easy to browse icons of the items that make it easier to find what you're looking for. When you add together all of these small account-related improvements, the process of checking out and shipping items just got a whole lot easier. Grab your download or update to the Zappos app from the Play Store link above.

More: Zappos

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3 years ago

HTC One $100 trade-in deal back until May 5

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Get a second chance at $100 (or more) with trade-in, no preorder required

In February, HTC started a promotion for those that preordered the HTC One: trade-in a qualifying old smartphone, and get at least $100 back with proof of purchase. This required a unique pre-registration code that HTC sent out upon preordering.

Those that missed HTC's original offer now get another shot at the $100 Visa gift card (up to $375 based on trade-in value). This second chance at the money back promotion is good for this weekend only (May 2 - May 5). Instead of unique codes given to each customer, HTC is giving out a universal code for anyone to use. To qualify, follow these three steps:

  1. Buy a new HTC One between 5/2/13 - 5/5/13
  2. Go to the promo page and enter the promotion code: HTC100
  3. Use the shipping label provided to mail-in your eligible smartphone and proof of your new HTC One purchase postmarked by 6/15/13 and you'll get a Prepaid Visa card by mail

This offer is good for phones purchased through U.S. carriers or national retails stores only. If you've been looking for an excuse to pickup a One, now's your chance.

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3 years ago

Samsung 9,000 mAh external battery pack - lots of juice for lots of dollars

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Here's a quick look at the Samsung 9000 mAh external battery pack that came out this spring and is currently available from the fine folks at ShopAndroid.com. These sorts of Android accessories are pretty simple by design, and Samsung's done well here. You've got a blocky charger -- it's about the same size as a deck of cards, but thicker -- but with sloping edges, making it easier to hang onto, if for some reason you don't want to stash it in a pocket.

Functionally, there's not a whole lot to do here. It blissfully charges via microUSB (this wasn't always the case with older batteries) at 1.8 amps -- that's the rated output as well. There's a real on/off switch instead of a button, which we prefer over pushbuttons. Four LEDs indicate the battery's level while charging or discharging. The rate at which your phone will be juiced up depends on your phone's battery capacity, of course -- and some phones like the HTC One may charge slower on purpose. But we didn't notice anything untoward here. It just works. 

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3 years ago

Beautiful Widgets launches free version

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Free basic version of the popular app, augmented by in-app purchases

The Beautiful Widgets team has launched a basic free version of its weather and widget customization app. The basic app can be augmented by in-app purchases, allowing users to choose and pay for the features they want. Through these in-app purchases it's possible to individually unlock every feature contained in the full version of Beautiful Widgets. Purchases are made using the "Gold" virtual currency through the GetJar service.

Speaking of which, the paid version of the app has since become 'Beautiful Widgets Pro,' and is still available to download for anyone wanting the full experience in a single download.

Today's developments are also good news for users in countries where paid Google Play apps might not be available. Developer LevelUp says both versions of Beautiful Widgets will maintain feature parity in future releases.

You can grab the new, free Beautiful Widgets using the Google Play link above.

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