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4 years ago

Weekly photo contest: Rocking out

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This week for the photo contest, Sonos has kicked in and we're offering a heck of a prize package. One winner will get  "The Ultimate Gift of Music", consisting of a Sonos Play:3 and a Sonos Bridge. Combined with the Sonos Controller for Android app it's a killer way to play your own music, or stream from services like Pandora, Spotify, Rhapsody and more, as well as over 100,000 free Internet radio station, shows, and podcasts.

Using a Sonos system is super-simple, and the Android app makes things a breeze to set up and operate. Getting a system of your own would be an awesome treat. That's where this week's photo contest comes in.

Hit the forum thread for the contest, and upload a picture showing how you enjoy your music. Headbanging, some cerebral, break dancing -- however it works for you. We'll look through them next week and pick a winner who can then jam to his or her music with a new Sonos system! Read the rules in the contest thread, and good luck.

Before we go, let's all congratulate the winner of last week's photo caption contest, crackmonke. Keep an eye on your inbox for information about getting your prize!

Enter this week's photo contest

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4 years ago

T-Mobile offering Samsung devices for free on contract Nov 16th-17th

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Well it looks like that earlier leak of a T-Mobile Samsung device sale was spot on. For two days this weekend -- November 16th and 17th -- T-Mobile stores will be selling just about every Samsung device they offer for $0 on contract. In typical T-Mobile fashion, the savings come in the form of a mail-in rebate. So if you're looking to pick up a Samsung Galaxy SIII (S3) on a Classic Plan, you'll have to plop down the full $299 and wait for that rebate in the mail.

The biggest omission here is the Galaxy Note 2, which makes sense considering that it has just launched and T-Mobile's on-contract price is very expensive. They may not be willing to subsidize it this much quite yet. Regardless, a Galaxy S3 for $0 on-contract sounds like a great deal if you're in the market for one.

Source: T-Mobile Newsroom

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4 years ago

Official Gangnam Style app for Android features live wallpaper, catchy ringtone

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For those that aren't absolutely sick of the Gangnam Style fad yet (we know at least a few that still aren't), Cellfish has launched an officially-licensed Android app. It includes a live wallpaper that features a now-famous elevator scene, the ability to turn your ringtone into the that of the popular song, and even includes a soundboard for those times that you really want to beat a meme to death. Finally, a cartoon version of Psy can also pop up on your screen and dance whenever a new text or e-mail comes in. 

I love Gangnam Style and all, but small doses, people. For those that have yet to get enough of it, you can find the Psy Gangnam Style live wallpaper and ringtone app in Google Play for $1.99. 

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4 years ago

Google: New Nexus devices sold out in some countries, more stock in 'coming weeks'

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As you'll know if you tried to pick up a new Nexus 4 or Nexus 10 today, the first round of stock didn't last long, and server load issues made it particularly tricky to get through the ordering process.

In its first statement on the Nexus launch, Google acknowledged that high demand for the new phone and tablet has led to the devices becoming sold out in some territories. At the time of writing, the Nexus 4 is unavailable in the UK, European, Australian, U.S. and Canadian Google Play devices stores. Nexus 10 availability is limited to the 16GB model in many countries.

On its posting on the official 'Nexus' Google+ account, the company says it's working to bring more stock to the Play Store, but offers little in the way of specific dates or quantities, simply stating that more stock would be due "in the weeks ahead."

There’s been so much interest for the Nexus lineup that we’ve sold out of some of our initial stock in a few countries! We are working hard to add more Nexus devices to Google Play in the coming weeks to keep up with the high demand. You can learn more about Nexus devices and stay updated at play.google.com/nexus

That'll come as little comfort to those who were prevented from placing orders today due to technical issues, but at least more stock will eventually be headed to Google Play.

Were you able to place your Nexus 4 or Nexus 10 order today? Head on over to our weekly sidebar poll and let us know.

Source: +Nexus

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4 years ago

Arcane Legends Android MMO now available globally

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After a soft launch in Canada and Australia, Spacetime Studios' free Arcane Legends online game is now available to download in the U.S. I played around with it a fair bit, and it's got some great real-time hack-and-slash action, classic RPG progression, and all of the online multiplayer stuff you'd expect, like cooperating on quests, building guilds, and so on. 

If you do end up giving it a shot, we've got a little present for the warriors in the house: Lloyd's Might Arm of Will. It's got a frost particle effect, because we're super-cool. Or something. Look, just go to the STS Nexus button at the top menu bar of the starting home screen after you've made your character and gone through the tutorial, hit the Enter Promo Code button under the Offers tab, and punch in androidcentral111312. Blammo, instead swordage. 

Just be warned that the servers are getting hammered pretty hard, since it's launch day for these guys. Any fantasy MMO fans out there? Anyone put time into Gameloft's Order & Chaos? How does it compare? 

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4 years ago

Sprint announces handful of new LTE cities

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Sprint has promised they they will have quite a few new LTE areas that will go live "in coming months." They include:

  • Minneapolis/St. Paul Minnesota
  • Oakland/Fremont/Hayward, California
  • Key West, Florida
  • Fort Smith, Arkansas
  • Michigan City/La Porte, Indiana
  • Bloomington, Indiana
  • Eau Claire, Wisconsin
  • Arrdmore, Oklahoma
  • McAllen/Edinburg/Mission, Texas

Sprint's biggest issue right now is expanding coverage, so it's good to see they've got some new markets lined up. I'm curious to see how that U.S. Cellular acquisition will improve their coverage. Any lucky Sprint customers in these areas? How about those of you on other carriers - is Sprint LTE availability an attraction at all? Sprint customers elsewhere, how many of you are still waiting for LTE?

Source: Sprint

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4 years ago

HSPA+ Nexus 7 now shipping with AT&T SIM in the U.S.

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Now that your chances of getting a Nexus 4 are down the drain (at least for now), if you poke around the Google Play Store a bit more you may find something interesting. The newest model of the Nexus 7, the one with HSPA+ data, is now listed as "Unlocked + AT&T SIM", rather than just "Unlocked". Reading through the specs you see that Google is directly promoting the use of the Nexus 7 on AT&T's "DataConnect" tablet plans, which let users choose both prepaid and postpaid options, as well as the ability to add the Nexus 7 to a Mobile Share plan.

This is certainly interesting considering that the Nexus 4 is being launched together with T-Mobile, and the Nexus 7 supports frequencies for T-Mobile as well. The good thing is that the SIM shipping in the box doesn't cost you anything extra, and you can easily remove it and use a T-Mobile plan instead. We're curious to know why there's no official support for a T-Mobile SIM out of the box at the time of order, though.

Source: Google Play Store; AT&T Support

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4 years ago

This week's sidebar poll: Were you able to order a new Nexus?

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Unfortunately, "coming soon" is what most people saw when they went to order a new Nexus device. To put it gently, the launch was a bit of a fustercluck. We've been ranting about it, and trying to figure out ways around it since late last night. We're tired, and half of us couldn't get a device ordered.

It was not a good day.

Something tells me that more than just a handful of sleepy bloggers had a bad morning. So take the poll, and vent away in the comments. We can't do anything about it, but we sure can bitch along with you. You'll find the poll in the sidebar to the right, or after the break.

Before we go, last weeks results.

Are you going prepaid with your Nexus 4?

  • Yes -- 56.93-percent
  • No -- 28.84-percent
  • Undecided -- 14.22-percent

So it looks like plenty of folks will be trying some flavor of pre-paid service, once they finally get hold of a Nexus 4.

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4 years ago

LG Optimus G now available on TELUS

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A little ahead of schedule, the LG Optimus G has launched on TELUS for $129 on a three-year contract. Here's what you can look forward to: 

  • Chipset: 1.5 GHz Quad-core Krait CPU Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro processor
  • Operating System: Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • Network: 2G / 3G / LTE
  • Display: 4.7-inch WXGA True HD IPSPLUS (1280 x 768 pixels) / 15:9 ratio
  • Memory: 32 GB
  • RAM: 2 GB DDR
  • Camera: 8.0MP rear / 1.3MP front
  • Battery: 2,100mAh (570Wh/L) / Talk time: 15 hours / Standby: 335 hours
  • Size: 131.9 x 68.9 x 8.45mm
  • Weight: 145g
  • Other: Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, USB2.0 HS, A-GPS, MHL and DLNA, NFC

Take a look at our review for the full run-down. Why would you want to get that with the LG Nexus 4 also on sale? Because it's pretty much impossible to get an order through to Google Play today (though it might be worth giving another go in a day or two once the insanity has died down). 

What's it going to be, Canadians? Keep pounding that F5 key and skip the contract if you get through, or just bite the bullet and get something a little higher-end right now? Those opting for the latter can pick up the LG Optimus G from the TELUS online store over here

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4 years ago

Sprint officially launches the ZTE Flash for $129.99

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We've seen the ZTE Flash for Sprint convincingly leak out a couple times before, but now we've got the official specs right from the source. This very Galaxy Nexus-looking handset is a solid mid-ranger for sprint packing a whopping 12.6MP camera. As for the full specs, you're getting a 4.5-inch display, 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 4G LTE (of course) all running on  a basically stock version of Android 4.0. There's 8GB of storage on-board, expandable by MicroSD up to another 32GB.

The ZTE Flash is available with a 2-year contract from Sprint at $129.99 up-front.

Source: Sprint Newsroom; Sprint

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4 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR M Jelly Bean OTA on its way

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We've received official word that the Android 4.1 update for the Motorola Droid RAZR M is in early stages of rolling out, and several users are reporting that they have seen the update. 

This update will bring the RAZR M all the features from 4.1, including the enhanced camera software, improved voice search and Google Now. Jelly Bean does a great job polishing the ICS interface as well, and should be a real treat on the RAZR M.

Check for the OTA in the device settings, or if you're rooted hang tight and wait for your favorite developer to chime in.

More: Motorola

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4 years ago

Android-powered Vuzix M100 aims to take on Google Glass

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Vuzix has announced the latest in their line of video-enabled eyewear, and it's going to be competing pretty directly with Google Glass. The M100 will run a tailored version of Android Ice Cream Sandwich, will pair up with devices over Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to support augmented reality (among other) apps, and project a WQVGA display to the eye, which works out to (about 432 x 240).

The front camera will shoot video at 720p, saved to the 4 GB of internal flash memory. The whole package will be powered by a 1 GHz processor. Battery life leaves a little something to be desired; you'll be able to get 8 hours on it if you're just doing classic hands-free stuff, but with that, the camera, and the display activated, Vuzix is expecting an hour of usage. Launch is expected to be early next year, but how much will it cost? Well, the developer kit which will include a production M100 when it's available is going for $999, so that should give you a rough idea. 

Is there any room for another augmented eyewear player with Google involved? Vuzix has been doing this sort of thing for longer, but Google has the ecosystem and developer support. Either way, will these kind of accessories actually get people to start using augmented reality apps regularly? How much can we reasonably expect people to pay for digital eyewear? More info on the Vuzix M100 can be found at their product page

Via: SlashGear

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4 years ago

Google Voice is broken in Android 4.2

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We're hearing lots of rumblings about Google Voice issues with Android 4.2, starting with the early Nexus 4 review units that went out, but that could've been blamed on pre-release software. Well it seems that the final 4.2 software has the same bits that make the Google Voice app crash as well. Going to the Google Voice app, hitting the button to create a new message and attempting to add a recipient causes a complete force close of the app -- every single time.

Now, this is likely an issue in Google Voice itself, which if we had to choose would be the preferred place to find the error simply because it can be updated quickly in the Play Store. Its still unfortunate to see an update completely break one of Google's own first-party apps. Hopefully the fix is coming soon. In the meantime, if you're a heavy Google Voice user you may want to hold off on that 4.2 update for your Galaxy Nexus.

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4 years ago

Completely new UI coming to imo instant messenger

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Following a general tidying up of its app just a month back, imo instant messenger is getting a complete UI overhaul today. The app is transitioning to a darker UI that is primarily black with red accents, accompanied by white backgrounds in the conversation view. Ease of use is the main goal with this update, with a combined conversation and contacts tab as well as improvements to the "imo network profile". The new UI looks very clean and in some ways mimics the design of stock Android's apps.

The update is scheduled to be live this afternoon at the Google Play Store link above. In the meantime, we've got a few more screenshots of the new UI for you after the break.

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4 years ago

Jelly Bean 4.2 SDK now available for download

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Fire up the old SDK manager, as you've got a new version to download!

The Android team has made the Android 4.2 SDK (API level 17) available for download, and it looks like there a few new goodies in there for developers to have a little fun with. The SDK (Software Development Kit) is the files and tools that application developers use to build all the great apps you see in Google Play, and getting it pushed out was certainly a priority. Here's some of the highlights:

Performance

We've worked with our partners to run Renderscript computation directly in the GPU on the Nexus 10, a first for any mobile computation platform.

New ways to engage users

Users can now place interactive lock screen widgets directly on their device lock screens, for instant access to favorite apps and content. With just a small update, you can adapt any app widget to run on the lock screen. Daydream is an interactive screensaver mode that users can encounter when their devices are charging or docked in a desk dock. You can create interactive daydreams that users display in this mode, and they can include any type of content.

New interaction and entertainment experiences

Android 4.2 introduces platform support for external displays that goes beyond mirroring. Your apps can now target unique content to any number of displays attached to an Android device.

Enhancements for international users

To help you create better apps for users in languages such as Arabic, Hebrew, and Persian, Android 4.2 includes native RTL support, including layout mirroring. With native RTL support, you can deliver the same great app experience to all of your users with minimal extra work. Android 4.2 also includes a variety of font and character optimizations for Korean, Japanese, Indic, Thai, Arabic and Hebrew writing systems.

To download the latest SDK, open the SDK manager and select the new items from the available sources. For more information about everything that's new, see the source links.

Source: Android Developers. More: Platform Highlights; API Overview

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