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4 years ago

From the Editor's Desk: Fathers of techies

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I'd wondered how long it'd take before I ended up linking to my wife from this space. That time has come.

Today, as hopefully you've remembered, is Father's Day. I've got two daughters. I've got more smartphones and tablets and computers and other geeky stuff than probably one person should have -- even one with my job. Inevitably, this tech ends up in dirty, sticky, little hands, to sometimes disastrous, sometime hilarious results.

It's amazing to watch a child not yet 2 years old swipe to unlock a phone. Whether she figured it out on her own, or saw her sister or mother or me do it, I'm not sure. But here's a kid who can't say more than a dozen words and for whom not falling down that many times a day is quite the accomplishment. To watch her pick up a phone with purpose, quickly unlock it and then proceed to rearrange the home screen beyond all recognition is worth the aggravation of taking an hour trying to restore things to a semi-usable state.

It's also interesting to see how far a toddler can throw a glass smartphone, much to the chagrin of the device in question.

Yes. My kids, like yours, are geniuses, smarter than any kids before them. They swipe to unlock. They use apps. They watch videos. They fling birds at pigs. They draw. They learn.

Back to my wife, though. She's now the local columnist at the newspaper where I worked for nearly a decade. (She's been there for 13 years or so now, previously as an editor.) She's also inundated with the ridiculous amount of tech in this house. Her most frequent question to me after "What the hell is that?" usually is "OK, then what does it do?" But, like any good wife out there, she helps this over-teched dad keep things in perspective. From her column today:

I want (the dads of my generation) to get credit for teaching their kids that picking on someone just because you can, or because everyone else is doing it, is wrong every time, on the playground and online.

I want them to get credit for teaching their kids to use a computer and an iPad and for making them put those things down and go play outside for an equal number of minutes.

... I want them to get credit for teaching their kids that without the Pixies, there never would have been Nirvana.

Well said, wife. Happy Father's Day, y'all.

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4 years ago

Samsung confirms all Canadian Galaxy S III models will include 50GB Dropbox promotion

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In a statement to the fine folks at MobileSyrup, Samsung has verified that all Canadian models of the Galaxy S III will include free (for two years) an extra 48GB Dropbox storage

New GS III users will receive a basic 2GB of free space with Dropbox (It is permanent). When they create their own Dropbox account or link their existing account to Samsung Apps, the user will receive 48GB more space through a promotional offer, for a total of 50GB. This is available for 2yrs.

This leaves us with two questions -- what happens to your files at the end of two years if you decide not to continue the 50GB plan, and why Verizon and AT&T decided against it. We can guess at the answer to the first -- you'll likely be given a grace period to get anything from the cloud you want to keep before you lose 48GB worth of your storage. Dropbox wants your love, and your money, and they know they won't get either if they delete your files willy-nilly.

The answer to the second part, well, that just escapes us. 

Source: MobileSyrup

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 caught on video bearing Telcel wallpaper

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is rightly so an interesting, and anticipated device. First shown off at Mobile World Congress back in February, what we're seeing here, and ultimately we're supposedly seeing at launch, is something different to the initial device we went hands on with. There's talk of the Note 10.1 going quad-core, as well as there having been a slight design change with a slot for the S-Pen being included now.

We thought the launch was getting closer only to be told that Amazon made a boo-boo. There is though a new, unofficial, video out there on the interwebs, of the Note 10.1 bearing a Telcel wallpaper. If nothing else on that front, it gives a bit of a clue as to one place it'll be heading when it eventually is released.

It's a pretty detailed video, and we won't spoil it for you. All the text is -- expectedly being Telcel anyway -- in Spanish, but reading isn't really necessary. The one spoiler we will throw in, is that at one point in the video, there is clearly a phone dialer on the screen. Absolutely enormous phone anyone? 

via GigaOM

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4 years ago

Android Central Editors' App Picks for June 16, 2012

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Here we are, back again. With the wedding behind me last week things are back to normal (for the most part) and here we are with quite a list. Without any further delay let's hit the break and check out some of our favorite picks from this week -- there are a bunch here! -- and as always be sure to let us know about your favorites as well!

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4 years ago

Future T-Mobile Samsung QWERTY slider snapped in the wild

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Well well well, what do we have here? Seems that Sprint might not be the only ones with a new QWERTY slider in the pipeline. The folks over at ​TmoNews ​have been sent this snapshot of what is purported to be the SGH-T699, a future Samsung smartphone heading to T-Mobile

Details on specs are a little scarce, but it's supposed to be housing some form of Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, a 5MP rear camera, a front facing camera and an LED notification light. Whatever this may be is also supposed to be running Android 4.0.4 out of the box. Oh, and the traditional -- at least internationally anyway -- Samsung home button. 

It probably isn't going to be the highest end device some would maybe hope for, but allegedly it does run really smoothly. QWERTY keyboards might well be going the way of the dinosaurs, but variety is still a good thing. Some people really like their keyboards after all. We'll have to keep our eyes open for more on this one.

Source: Tmonews

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4 years ago

TELUS Samsung Galaxy Note due for some Ice Cream Sandwich July 13, Galaxy Tab 8.9 slips to August

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A couple of weeks ago, we got a look at a TELUS document detailing their revised Ice Cream Sandwich update schedule for their Android devices. There's another updated document out there now, detailing in particular a specific "in market" date for the Samsung Galaxy Note of July 13. The ICS update for the Note brings among other things enhanced S-Pen applications, and is well worth the upgrade. 

Of other Samsung devices on the list, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 remains pencilled for late July, but it's smaller sibling, the Galaxy Tab 8.9, has now slipped to August. 

Source: TELUS via Mobilesyrup

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4 years ago

First look at a Motorola QWERTY slider on Sprint!

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Well, now, what have we here? It appears that Motorola and Sprint are testing some sort of QWERTY slider smartphone. This pic comes from Va1ha11a in our Rumored Devices forum (still one of my favorite places to hang out). Supposedly this is a test device, and other than what we see, that's about all we know.

So what do we see? That's a five-row keyboard with staggered keys and dedicated arrow buttons. We're going to guess that's a qHD display (feel free to correct us with any math-based opinions). And you can easily see the Sprint Music app there in the drawer. 

Loads of questions remain, of course. It's probably safe to say this one's an LTE-capable device. What's under the hood, then? Will we finally start to see some Intel-Motorola love here in the states? (Remember how the two companies in January announced a multi-year agreement, with devices starting to land this fall.) And when was the last time Motorola did a slider here that wasn't part of Verizon's Droid line?

Also of note is that save for the slider keyboard, this appears to be a buttonless device, using screen real estate for back, home and multitasking, as Google intended. That's in contrast to recent efforts from other manufacturers, including LG and Samsung. That's something we're paying more and more attention to, as it goes against (at least in spirit) Google's references for Android 4.0 design.

So what say you, Sprint fans? This Motorola slider piquing your interest any? Get in on the whole discussion in the link below.

Read: Sprint-Motorola new ICS buttonless slider coming

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4 years ago

EA Games launches weekend promotion for Father's Day

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EA Games is offering a 40% discount on a selection of games this weekend to celebrate Father's Day. Jolly decent of them, too. Need For Speed Hot Pursuit, Dead Space, FIFA 12 and Plants Vs. Zombies all have the discount applied, and are available right now.

If you haven't picked up these games yet, now is the perfect excuse to go and grab them. From a personal perspective I have played all but FIFA 12 (yes, I am British and hate football) and they're all top-notch titles with hours of fun to be had.

Head on over to Google Play and grab them while they're hot. You can find all the Play Store links for the featured titles after the break.

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4 years ago

Android Central international round-up - June 16, 2012

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As North America waits for its Galaxy S III, and Android fans around the world count the days until Google IO, it's been another relatively busy week in international Android news. We've had phone launches, phone announcements, and a few pricing announcements and special deals along the way.

Sony brought two new entry-level devices into the world, in the form the Xperia Miro and Xperia Tipo, following a Facebook promotion campaign that lasted a few days. And we learned that the UK market will be graced by a slew of new Android phones next month, including the LG Optimus 4X HD, Sony Xperia Go and Samsung Galaxy Beam. We also saw new European roaming deals from UK carriers Vodafone and Three.

And in sporting developments, we learned that Galaxy S III owners will be able to watch the summer Olympics for free thanks to a deal between Samsung and Eurosport. The BBC also debuted its mobile sports streaming site, in time for the knockout stages of Euro 2012 tournament.

Check out the rest of the week's international highlights below. If you've got international news, be sure to tip us at the usual address.

Special features:

News: 

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4 years ago

Late-night poll: Are you switching from Verizon after the news about shared data?

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Pretty specific poll here tonight, but it had to be done. A lot of people are pretty unhappy about it, and it's a hot topic for discussion. Of course I'm talking about Verizon's newly-announced shared data bucket plans. I'll still agree with Phil that it's something we should have expected eventually, but that does little to soften the blow for most folks. Let's cut right to the chase -- if you're a Verizon customer, after this week's reveal of the new plans are you staying or leaving?

Take the poll, let's hear it.

Are you leaving Verizon over the new shared data bucket plans?

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4 years ago

CyanogenMod 7.2 stable builds start rolling out to various devices

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As we learned from the previously announced code freeze on CM9, the CyanogenMod team has been working hard on getting CyanogenMod 7.2 stable builds out the door for various devices. Though no ETA's were given in their previous announcements, If you head on over the CyanogenMod downloads page there is a bunch of devices that have new builds available for download that have been marked as stable.

There is yet to be an official announcement from the CyanogenMod team but surely it's coming when they have a few more devices covered. Go ahead, have a look and see if you can among the first to give CyanogenMod 7.2 a go. Make sure you drop by the Android Central forums as well and let us know how things are working out for ya!

Source: CyanogenMod Downloads

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4 years ago

Nexus Tablet talk, Wi-Fi Fixes [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.

If you're not already a member of the Android Central forums, you can register your account today.

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4 years ago

Canadians will see Samsung Galaxy S III delayed until June 27

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Canadian retailers have been taking preorders for the Samsung Galaxy S III for quite some time now but according to Samsung, the official launch originally set for June 20th in Canada will now happen on June 27th. Why, you ask? Demand for the device according to Samsung Canada who took to Twitter to let their followers know:

Due to unprecedented demand, our launch of GALAXY S III will happen June 27th, rather than June 20th. Thanks for your understanding.

You'll have to excuse us for being a little skeptical here Samsung. Yes, we know you reportedly have over 9 Million global preorders for the Samsung Galaxy S III but that being the case does that mean you allocated the stock elsewhere and now are making Canadians wait? Will this delay also, eventually cause a delay for U.S. customers as well?

Seems kinda like we're not getting the full story here. What? Someone had to say it.

Via: Mobile Syrup

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4 years ago

Android A to Z: Nandroid backup

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If you've read about hacking or rooting your Android phone (or tablet, or media player) you've seen the word Nandroid used. When tinkering with your device, there's always a very good chance you'll be left with firmware that won't boot, leaving you in a bit of a lurch. A Nandroid backup can mean the all the difference here.

What it is, is a full backup of partitions on your device's NAND flash (NAND stands for NOT AND, a type of electronic logic gate -- it's like the hard drive of your Android device) storage. Think of it as a snapshot of the current running system, and it can be used to restore that that point at any time. Both user data and system files are backed up, and it's a far cry from what we think of when talking about a traditional backup from other software. In fact, it's something that many folks wish was part of the stock Android recovery. Yes, to preform a Nandroid backup you'll need a custom recovery on your device so that the executable files and scripts are there. These have been left out of the stock recovery, likely over issues that would arise if users can backup proprietary files. 

Getting the custom recovery on your device is the hardest part, thankfully. Once installed backing up and restoring with Nandroid is simple, involving nothing more than choosing the option and verifying -- no wires needed. Even if you never plan to hack your phone ( I like stock ICS on my Galaxy Nexus), flashing a custom recovery and running a Nandroid backup is always a good idea. You can find more information about custom recoveries, as well as methods to install and use them, in the device-specific section for your device in the Android Central forums. Give it a look, and decide if it's something you're interested in doing.

Check out the complete Android Dictionary

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4 years ago

Get exclusive items in selected games during Collectibles Week on Google Play

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Google is kicking off a fun little promotion in the Google Play store today, and for the next week you'll be able to get exclusive content inside more than 20 games. The items and the games themselves are a pretty eclectic mix, some are Android themed like a t-shirt in Stardom or an Android monster in Monster Park, others are more mundane, like patio furniture in The Sims Freeplay.

This promo is available for everyone and not limited to the US only (Hooray!). If you're a fan of games with premium content, and want to grab some exclusives, hit the source links for more information.

Collectibles Week: US, outside the US; via: +Google Play

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