Headlines

2 years ago

Which Samsung Galaxy S II is right for you?

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Plus, a recap of the U.S. launch event

So here's your obligatory shot of the three U.S. versions (so far) of the Samsung Galaxy S II. We crawled all over these guys at the U.S. launch event, and they're definitely lookers. We could ask you which one you like the best, or which one you think looks better. But to anyone who's actually held one (or all three), it's pretty obvious that you're pretty much dealing with the same device here, insofar as look, feel and performance go.

And the Super AMOLED Plus displays? (They're so named because they have more subpixels that a mere Super AMOLED display.) You're going to want to see these in action if you haven't already.

Oh, there are some subtle differences in software (but nothing really to write home about just yet), and the AT&T Galaxy S II (that's it's official name, by the way) is noticeably smaller at 4.3 inches, instead of the 4.52 inches seen in Sprint and T-Mobile's versions. Trust us when we say you'll be OK with that.

No, the deciding factor over which Galaxy S II version you get in the United States really comes down to which carrier you're on. Let's break it all down, after the break.

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2 years ago

A sneak peak at the Droid Bionic training docs, plus more confirmation of a Sept. 8 launch

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If you sell Verizon smartphones, chances are you're well on your way to being properly trained up on the Motorola Droid Bionic. And we've gotten a sneak peak at the training, which we'll share with you here. There aren't many surprises -- it'll have all the usual accessories and Webtop dock -- it'll even come with a phone charger! But seeing as how it's been a couple hours since we last teased the DB, we now present you with more, after the break.

Oh, and with the demise of the fake Droid Bionic Twitter account also comes the demise of the unofficial Sept. 8 launch date. It's cool, though. We've gotten more confirmation that independent retailers are expecting inventory on Sept. 8, and we may see pre-orders start on Sept. 1, so be sure to check in.

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2 years ago

Sony Ericsson unveils Xperia Arc S with 1.4GHz CPU, coming October

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Sony Ericsson has unveiled the latest addition to its 2011 Xperia line -- the Xperia Arc S, which builds on its previous flagship device by bumping its CPU speed from 1.0 to 1.4 GHz, a change SE says will deliver "up to 25% faster" entertainment experiences. The Arc S includes the same 8.1-megapixel Exmor R camera sensor found in the original Arc, and thanks to a software upgrade, the new model will also support 3D sweep panorama recording out of the box.

Design-wise, it's the same slim Xperia Arc chassis we all know and love, available in a variety of colors, including "Pure White, Midnight Blue, Misty Silver, Gloss Black and Sakura Pink". Like its predecessor, the Arc S also runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread on top of which sits Sony Ericsson's custom UX.

The Xperia Arc's sleek design and high-performance camera made it one of our favorite phones of the year so far, and we look forward to getting our hands on the re-vamped model when it's available this October. Join us after the jump for the full specs, along with today's press release in.

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2 years ago

US Department of Justice files motion opposing AT&T/T-Mobile merger (update: AT&T responds)

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Back in March, AT&T announced their plan to acquire T-Mobile USA, which spurred vehement opposition. Dan Hesse, the CEO of Sprint, didn't hesitate to let everyone know he thought it was a terrible idea. T-Mobile customers voiced their concerns, which stemmed from their dislike of AT&T. Well, T-Mobile customers and Hesse may have just gained a huge ally, as the US Department of Justice has filed court papers blocking the merger.

In its filing, the DOJ said, "AT&T’s elimination of T-Mobile as an independent, low- priced rival would remove a significant competitive force from the market." If the deal falls through, AT&T faces paying T-Mobile parent company Deutsche Telekom a $3 billion break-up fee.

Update: AT&T has responded to the DOJ's filing, expressing "surprise and disappointment" --

We are surprised and disappointed by today’s action, particularly since we have met repeatedly with the Department of Justice and there was no indication from the DOJ that this action was being contemplated.

We plan to ask for an expedited hearing so the enormous benefits of this merger can be fully reviewed. The DOJ has the burden of proving alleged anti-competitive affects and we intend to vigorously contest this matter in court.

At the end of the day, we believe facts will guide any final decision and the facts are clear. This merger will:

· Help solve our nation’s spectrum exhaust situation and improve wireless service for millions.
· Allow AT&T to expand 4G LTE mobile broadband to another 55 million Americans, or 97% of the population;
· Result in billions of additional investment and tens of thousands of jobs, at a time when our nation needs them most.

We remain confident that this merger is in the best interest of consumers and our country, and the facts will prevail in court.

Source: BloombergThanks to everyone who sent this in!

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2 years ago

AT&T announces the Jetstream - HTC's first Honeycomb tablet, available Sept. 4 for $699 with LTE data

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AT&T has finally unwrapped HTC's first Honeycomb tablet -- the 10.1-inch Jetstream. This puppy's been leaked every which way to Sunday, and specs are largely as we've previously seen.

Here's the breakdown:

  • LTE (700/AWS)
  • HSPA+/HSPA/UMTS (850/1900/2100 MHz)
  • EDGE/GPRS (850/900/1800/1900 MHz)
  • Android 3.1 (Honeycomb)
  • HTC Sense™ UX for tablets
  • Display: 10.1” WXGA HD screen
  • Processor: Third-generation Snapdragon 1.5GHz dual-core processor
  • Camera: Front Facing 1.3 MP, Rear facing 8 MP and Dual LED Flash
  • Battery: 7,300 mAh
  • Expandable Memory: MicroSD up to 32 GB
  • Dimensions: 7” (l) x 9.87” (w) x 51” (d)
  • Weight: 25 ounces

It's also got the HTC Scribe writing feature, which isn't a huge surprise since HTC outed it previously in its Honeycomb SDK.

Now, let's talk pricing. This is all a little new since AT&T's just now launching its LTE network in a scant few cities. The Jetstream itself retails for a whopping $699 with two-year contract. Then you have to consider a data plan. And you've got three options there:

  • A $35, 3 GB-a-month deal with a two year contract.
  • Month-by-month post-paid (as in it shows up on your bill) contracts of $14.99 for 250MB, or $25 for 2 GB. If you have the 2GB plan and go over, you'll be charged $10 per extra GB.
  • Month-by-month prepaid service with the same pricing as the post-paid plan, only if you go over the 2GB plan, you can purchase another 2GB for $25. You'll be billing all this directly to your credit card.

Interesting choices, indeed, though the relatively small footprint of AT&T's budding LTE network and that $699 price point on the tablet itself are going to cause a bit of heartburn.

Source: AT&T


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2 years ago

Droid Bionic finally on Droid Does site, needs help from us lowly bloggers

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Now this is interesting. The Droid Bionic has finally gone up on Verizon's Droid Does page, and there's some hidden material waiting to be unlocked. And who has the codes? A few of your favorite blogs. Along with Boing Boing, BGR and Joystiq, we've been tasked with helping unlocked whatever VZW's got cooped up behind there.

Looks like we've at least got some video waiting for us all. And don't worry, we'll get to work on this soon enough.

More: Droid Bionic forums

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2 years ago

Motorola Milestone 2 to get Gingerbread in 'early Q4'

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Just as Motorola Droid 2 owners in the US are eagerly awaiting their Gingerbread update, users of its international equivilent, the Milestone 2, received some welcome news from Motorola Europe today. Moto Europe reports on its Facebook page that the Milestone 2 will receive an official bump up to Android 2.3 Gingerbread during 'early Q4'. So, sometime in the next couple of months, with any luck.

It's a definite improvement over the situation with the original Milestone, which languished on Eclair until mid-March. Our fingers are crossed for you, Milestone 2 owners!

Source: Motorola Europe on Facebook

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2 years ago

Toshiba Thrive coming to Europe as the AT100

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The Toshiba Thrive has been available stateside for almost two months, and now it seems the Japanese manufacturer is about to let Euros in on the action, too. The chunky Honeycomb tablet has appeared on Toshiba Europe's products website sporting the name AT100-100. There are no references to the Thrive branding specifically, but the specs are an exact match, as is the product image.

If the idea of a larger Android tablet with full USB, SD card and MMC support has your interest piqued, then be sure to read our full review of the American version to find out more.

Source: Toshiba EU; via: Eurodroid

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2 years ago

Android App Review: Barcode Scanner

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This one's a classic, and with 10 to 50 million installs, it should be. Most of you have probably heard of it, but for those who haven't, it's called Barcode Scanner and you're going to want to get it.

Barcode Scanner is pretty straightforward. Open up the app, line up a barcode in between the rectangular viewfinder, and you're off to the races. If you're scanning traditional barcodes, Barcode Scanner will give you price comparisons on whatever product you're looking at as well as user reviews.

What really makes Barcode Scanner something you'll want to download is the fact it scans and reads QR codes. For those who don't know, QR codes are those black-and-white squares found at the end of all of our app reviews. They usually contain data like a text file, or in this case, a link to an app on the Market. Having Barcode Scanner at your disposal means you can just scan the code and get taken to the app in the Market, no searching necessary.

Barcode Scanner also has some cool sharing options. You can send information you scan to someone via a text message or you can share it on any number of networks you've downloaded on your phone. That includes email, bluetooth, or in my case, Google+. It's another simple and intuitive way to get the word out about something you scanned and makes it easy on others trying to access the same information.

Barcode Scanner is completely free to download and totally ad-free as well. It's a small app with no frills about it. You can scan barcodes (and QR codes) and that's about it.

If you've got an Android phone, you probably already have it, but in case you don't, download links and a few more screenshots are after the break.

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2 years ago

Android 3.2 SDK update now available

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Google has made the Honeycomb 3.2 SDK component available for download, as well as an update to the SDK tools, the compatibility package and a new release of the Android NDK.  These tools help developers create new apps using features introduced with the 3.2 update, including optimizations for more tablet types, compatibility zoom for apps that are fixed size, media sync from SD card support, and an extended API for managing screen size (including 720p televisions and similar devices).

The details are all at the Android Developer site, and the updates can be downloaded from within the SDK.  Google seems to be stepping up for Honeycomb development, and we're sure more great apps will follow.

Source: Android Developers

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