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3 years ago

Cricket's Huawei Mercury Ice gets redesigned, hitting Radio Shack Sep. 5

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Huawei has redesigned, renamed and re-released the Mercury (aka the Huawei Honor), and Cricket is bringing it to Radio Shack on September 5. In addition to the new handle, the phone's face is now offered in a pearl white, and just like we told you yesterday, unlimited MUVE music is part of the package. Fifty dollars a month for unlimited talk, text, data, and music streaming isn't a bad deal at all.

Unfortunately, the software doesn't seem to have been updated and it's still running on Gingerbread under Huawei's tweaks. We've got no information about any pricing, but we expect it to be priced competitively. We just heard back from our tipster, and we now know that the Mercury Ice will check in at $149.99 -- contract free.

Certainly this is no barn burner, but with a fairly decent Ice Cream Sandwich ROM in the wild and a respectable hacking community, it may be worth traveling to your local Radio Shack to have a look. There's a couple more pics after the break

Thanks, Anon!

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3 years ago

Behind the scenes with Sony's designers

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We take a look at the design language of Sony's new Arc family

At its IFA press conference, Sony Mobile launched four new Xperia smartphones -- Xperia T, Xperia TX, Xperia J and Xperia V. The announcement came just six months after the Xperia NXT series made its European debut, and saw Sony presenting two distinctly different families of devices within the same year. From the Xperia TX at the high-end to the Xperia J at entry-level, all four devices channel the design of a phone for which we still have something of a soft spot -- the Xperia Arc. And at a meeting at IFA 2012 in Berlin, we had the chance to learn more about this dramatic change in design direction.

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3 years ago

Hands-on with HBO Go on Nexus 7

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Oh, happy day! After a bit of a false start this afternoon with the first update on Google Play, HBO Go is finally available on Jelly Bean devices -- and more specifically, on the Nexus 7. That's the 7-inch tablet with thie high-resolution display Google released this summer, and we've been dying to give HBO's on-demand streaming a go.

The app is pretty stunning, visually. You're asked to log in through your cable provider at the outset (though you can browse shows as a guest, too). From there, you're greeted with a moving wall of thumbnails. Movies, series, specials -- everything HBO has to offer through the app is right there. You can browser traditional menus if you want, but that's not nearly as much fun.

Pick a show, and watch. It's that simple. And it's about time.

We've got some quick hands-on video after the break if you prefer.

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3 years ago

Regularly review - how to tackle fuzzy task management

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Regularly for Android is a fresh take on the usual task management app. Instead of setting hard deadlines, Regularly is an attempt to organize tasks that simply have to be done within a certain window on a recurring basis. Users can set the interval for reminders throughout the task’s period, and tasks that are approaching or past due are appropriately color-coded and bubble up to the top for increased visibility.

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3 years ago

HBO Go now supports Jelly Bean - and Jelly Bean devices [updated]

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Update 2: Everything's working now. Huzzah!

Update: HBO has removed that Jelly Bean line from the "What's new" section. So much for that.

The HBO Go app today got an update to support Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, as well as "performance enhancements and bug fixes." Unfortunately, it doesn't actually support any devices that are actually running Jelly Bean. Go figure.

As you can see above, you still can't install HBO Go to the Nexus 7 from Google Play. Or, on a stock Galaxy Nexus -- also running Jelly Bean. 

We're hoping HBO just needs to flip the permissions switch in Google Play to allow the devices that actually are officially running the version of Android it now officially supports. But until then, we're just gonna stick to Netflix, we guess.

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3 years ago

NVIDIA and AC are giving away 5 Nexus 7 prize packages

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The only thing better than hearing about cool Tegra 3 games like Horn is getting some gear to play them on -- and look good doing it. NVIDIA and AC are giving away five Nexus 7 prize packs to help you out here. 

Five lucky winners will each get a 16GB Google Nexus 7, a Lloyd t-shirt from ShopAndroid.com, and a Lloyd Secret Society pin. That's one heck of a combo!

Entering is easy -- hit the Android contest forums and let us know you're interested. We'll pick five winners at random, and contact you via the e-mail address you used to register here at AC. Simple, right? What are you waiing for!

Enter to win a Nexus 7 prize package

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3 years ago

Droidax Power Pack for the Samsung Galaxy S3

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The Samsung Galaxy S3 gets a good Mophie-style case/ch​arger combo

Ed. Note: Droidax has fixed a design flaw we spotted in our initial review. This review was updated on Oct. 23, 2012.

Like many a first wife in Texas has said, you can never have too much power. (At least that's what I assume first wives in Texas say. But then again I watch a lot of "Dallas.") To that end, we present the Droidax Power Pack for the Samsung Galaxy S3.

If this idea looks familiar, it should. It's in the same vein as arguably the most important iPhone accessory -- the Mophie Juicepack. This is a dual-function accessory -- it's a case and an external 2300 mAh battery combined, prolonging life in more ways than one.

Piqued your interest yet?

Read on for some more thoughts.

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3 years ago

'Recommended for You' section shows up in Google Play

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The Google Play Store has quite stealthily started showing "Recommended for You" sections today. Tapping into the recommendation area (found inside Apps, Music, Magazines, etc.) you'll see a list of apps based on a factors described within each entry. For example if you're recommended a camera app, it may say that the app is popular with users of another camera app which you've purchased previously. Other recommendations come from the nondescript "popular with similar users", "+1'd by your friends" and "popular in your area". The exact metrics for recommendations aren't known, but if we had to guess we'd say Google has a pretty sophisticated algorithm working on this.

Thankfully, you can help Google define what you'd like to see in your recommended list by hitting the hide button on any app that you'd prefer not to see from that point out. It's yet to be seen whether or not that will permanently hide the recommendation forever or if it'll come back eventually, but it's nice to know what you can influence the selections a little bit. What it all comes down to is increasing app discovery, which is a good thing. There are a ton of really great apps out there in the Play Store that just don't get enough attention.

Thanks, Archit!

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3 years ago

New Kindle Fire leaked, slim on specs

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A shot of what's supposed to be the next Kindle Fire has leaked, though we don't know much about what's going on with this tablet. Apparently both a 7-inch and a 10-inch model are planned, but no word on how they'll compare in terms of specs or price. The overall software will be lighter on chrome, according to the source. 

Amazon made a pretty big deal about the original Kindle Fire being out of stock earlier today, suggesting that these new models aren't too far into the future - maybe even next week. One would expect that the next generation of the Kindle Fire would try to be just as affordable as the previous version, but that's entirely up to speculation. 

Kindle Fire owners, are you feeling ready for an upgrade? What would you like to see in the next Kindle Fire?

Source: The Verge

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3 years ago

Horn review - golem battles have never looked so good

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Horn has launched in Google Play and the Nvidia Tegra Zone today, offering a blend of 3D combat and platforming action in a very nicely-rendered package. The game’s story takes you through the quest of a young blacksmith that wakes up one day to find his world is in ruin and populated by large, grouchy golems. By sheer happenstance, the boy discovers these golems are actually people under a curse, and takes it upon himself to restore his friends and family to their original state and ultimately bring the world back to normal.

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3 years ago

Hands on with the new TomTom for Android satellite navigation app

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TomTom for Android has been an awfully long time coming. Having been available on iOS now for a number of years, the global satellite navigation giant has been somewhat tardy in bringing it to Android. But, it's officially official now, we're getting it on Android in October. The biggest question still remains the same though -- why buy this on an OS that comes with a perfectly good satellite navigation system built in for free? We went hands on at IFA 2012 in Berlin to see if maybe we could answer that. 

First things first, TomTom is a really nice looking application. The interface is well designed -- and by that we mean it's designed as if this were a stand alone TomTom device. One of the not so great points about Google Maps Navigation is that the in app menus are still designed like a smartphone app. TomTom has some really large, bold icons that make for simple use in the car. 

All the necessary information is present too, speed, distance to destination, arrival time as you would expect from an app such as this. Also available is HD traffic, which during the demonstration showed just how bad an idea driving in Berlin in the afternoon can be. Speed camera locations are also available in TomTom -- not that anyone at AC speeds anywhere, ever -- and the locations are community built. For example, if you drive past a location not registered and you come across a mobile speed camera, by tapping the relevant icon you can report this information back for inclusion in the database. 

The demo unit also shows the universal TomTom docking system in action. This is perfect for use with an Android smartphone, as it has adjustable arms to suit the differing sizes of devices. It also has a microUSB charging facility so there's still only need to have one device plugged into the cigarette lighter socker. 

We're going to have to wait until October though to really get to grips with TomTom for Android. No matter how good it may look on a show floor, real world performance is what matters here. There are definitely features in TomTom which is going to make it justifiable for regular drivers over something like Google Maps Navigation, but price is going to play a big part in that decision. 

And as yet, we still don't know that price. TomTom informed us that the pricing information will be announced at launch, but that it will be available in Google Play in markets around the world sometime in October. It does feel like a full on TomTom navigation system though, and with an application available for a smartphone, it makes you wonder how long the stand alone systems will continue to sell. You can find our hands on video after the break.

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3 years ago

Hands-on with Sony's latest at IFA [video]

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Let's do this in one fell swoop, shall we? Here's a walkthrough with all of Sony's new kit at IFA in Berlin. Seven minutes in Sony smartphone heaven, if you will. The glitz! The glamour! The glossy fingerprints!

Seriously, though, Here's a quick look at the new Sony Xperia T, Xperia TX, Xperia J, Xperia V, Acro S, the Xperia Tablet S -- and some waterproof demos as well.

Accessories? Oh, we got 'em, too.

Oh, and Ice Cream Sandwich on the Xperia Ion, which hasn't actually been pushed out yet.

So, yeah. A whole lot of kit from Sony at IFA. Enjoy!

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3 years ago

ZTE team up with Intel and announce the ZTE Grand X IN

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It only seems five minutes ago we had the ZTE Grand X released and already it is being superseded by another flagship device. The ZTE Grand X IN is powered by an Intel® Atom™ processor Z2460 with Intel® Hyper-Threading which should make the new handset more efficient in the power department whilst still delivering a fast and powerful experience. The majority of the specs look to be on-par with the original Grand X although the camera has had a boost and we now get an 8MP instead of the 5. The shell looks identical and from handling the Grand X I can say it is a pretty solid device for its price point.

Other features include a 4.3 inch TFT 16 million-color display, a 1650 mAh battery and HSPA+ 21Mbps. The device is planned for release in Europe during September and will run Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box. There is no word on plans to get Jelly Bean on it so I wouldn't hold your breath for that one however when carriers announce pricing for the ZTE Grand X IN I expect them to be very competitive. The Grand X that launched here in the UK just last month is sitting just short of the £200 mark on pay as you go so fingers crossed the final figure for the IN will be in that ball park.

Catch the press release and full specs below:

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3 years ago

Speck PixelSleeve review

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I'm loving the Speck PixelSleeve Plus for my full-size Android tablet. A 10-inch Android tablet is too big to put in a pocket. For a lot of folks, the screen real-estate is more important than portability, so a 10-incher is the choice. Since you can't stuff one into the cargo pocket on your pants, you'll need a way to carry it around once you venture outside. If you're like me, that means a backpack filled with other gear that can (and will) scratch up the screen and do other ugly things to your expensive tablet computer, so you'll need some protection. Click through and have a look.

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3 years ago

Fido kicks off LTE network across Canada

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Fido announced today the availability of LTE coverage in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and St. John's. Expansions later this year are planned for Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Kingston, Quebec City, and lots of other areas. They don't have any LTE phones just yet, but they do have a a mobile hotspot available to kick things off. Speeds average between 12 Mbps and 25 Mbps, and sometimes hitting 40 Mbps. Of course, Fido is really just tapping into the LTE network built by their parent company, Rogers, but at least means a few more high-speed options for those that prefer to go prepaid. Fido's top data add-on is $25 for 2 GB, or you can opt for 500 MB as part of their top-tier $50 plan. 

More LTE is great and all, but I'd really like to see the little guys like WIND and Mobilicity get on the bandwagon. LTE is a big selling point for going with Rogers, Bell, or TELUS, even if the smaller carriers can beat them on plan prices. Fido would need some pretty compelling plans in order to pull away customers from Bell, TELUS, or even its big brother Rogers, but even though they've doubled up the data allocations on the two lower tiers, I'm still not entirely sold. 

In any case,  more info on Fido's LTE roll-out is available here. Anyone on Fido hankering for LTE and not willing to go to the Big Three to get it?

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