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4 years ago

Picking up your Nexus 7 today? Here's some required reading


The Google Nexus 7 is starting to make it its way out to consumers around the world, and if you're among the lucky early adopters picking up the Jelly Bean tablet this week, we've got some required reading for you. As you'll know if you've been watching the site since Google I/O, we've been covering the heck out of the Nexus 7, so we've got all the information you'll need as you're getting to grips with your new tablet.

Let's dive right in --

  • Nexus 7 hands-on and initial review
    You should already have a pretty good idea of what's lurking within that Nexus 7 box, but if you want to brush up on the basics before going any further, our complete hands-on report and video walkthrough is where you'll want to start. (And if you're still on the fence, why not check out our full review of the tablet.)
  • How to unlock the bootloader and root the Nexus 7
    The Nexus 7 isn't just a portal into Google Play, it's also a Nexus device, and that means easy bootloader unlocking, rooting and hacking. If you're new to this side of Android, be sure to check out our guide to unlocking and rooting the Nexus 7, courtesy of AC forum moderator ragnarokx.
  • Top 5 Games for your new Nexus 7
    With a quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 CPU (and 12-core GeForce GPU) inside, the Nexus 7 is a great mobile gaming device. If you're a gamer, why not check out Simon Sage's guide to the top five games to try out on your new Nexus 7 tablet. (You'll find even more suggestions from readers in the comments.)
  • Check out the official Nexus 7 guide book
    There's no manual inside the Nexus 7 box, but you'll find all the basics in the official Nexus 7 guide book on Google Play Books. You'll find it inside the Google Play Books app when you power on your Nexus 7 for the first time.
  • Get to grips with new Jelly Bean features
    From the redesigned notification area to the buttery new home screen launcher, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean includes a host of new features. Find out about all the new tricks Android 4.1 has up its sleeve in our Jelly  Bean feature articles, complete with video walkthroughs.

If you're getting your Nexus 7 today or later this week, then shout out in the comments and let us know how you're getting on!

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4 years ago

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light released on Android, exclusive to Xperia for now


The latest big name title to arrive on Android, is Square Enix's Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. Fans of the Tomb Raider series of games will feel right at home, and while Android is pretty much the last place for this title to show up -- it's even on the BlackBerry PlayBook already -- as always, big titles are welcome. 

The one, big, caveat at the moment though, is that the title is exclusive to Xperia devices for the time being. Playing a title such as this on an Xperia Play is sure to be an enjoyable experience, but for those of us without one of the supported Sony devices, we're just going to have to wait. There's no word at present on how long this exclusivity will last. 

The good news for Xperia owners, is that for now at least, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light can be had for the low low price of £0.99/$1.29. 

Download: Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

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4 years ago

Contest Reminder: Win a Mobile Nations dream device of YOUR choice!


The Mobile Nations team is celebrating the first birthday of the Monday Brief, and we want to hook a lucky winner up with their dream device. We're not just going to have a regular old "post a comment and win" type giveaway this time. Instead, we're recruiting YOU to help us revamp and refresh the Monday Brief intro. Have you been lusting after the Samsung Galaxy S III? How about the new iPad? Or perhaps you've been anxiously awaiting the next round of Windows Phone 8 devices or are holding out for BlackBerry 10? Well this is your chance to win one of those dream devices!

Over the years we've seen some pretty crazy entries for video contests here at Mobile Nations (Kevin often brings up a certain Pudding Wrestling in Time Square CrackBerry video), but we want to top them all, so we're gonna make this the best video contest Mobile Nations has ever had! Seriously, we want to you see you all get creative, get crazy and show us your passion to help. Let's have a look at what you could win:

  • GRAND PRIZE: One (1) phone, tablet, or gadget you've read about on Mobile Nations websites, valued at up to $600 USD
  • Runners Up: We'll hook you up with some awesome stuff. Either a coupon to one of the stores, some swag or something else you'll love. Don't worry, if we use your intro on a Monday Brief, we'll give you recognition and a nice little reward.

Once again, this is a video contest -- you'll have to get creative and assemble your most creative, funny, or just plain insane version of Ashley's weekly introduction to the Monday Brief. If you're not sure what part that is, watch the beginning of the show. Jump below to get the full details on how to enter and check out the rules, you'll need to follow them accordingly.

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4 years ago

T-Mobile Galaxy S Blaze 4G software update available, serves as preparation for ICS


Although the Galaxy S Blaze 4G didn't garner a lot of attention, that doesn't mean T-Mobile has forgotten about the device. In fact, owners of the Blaze 4G should be checking for updates right now, as there is one currently available. The update is noted to be rolling out now through August 5th and available through OTA and Samsung Kies. As it stands, it fixes a few bugs but mostly it serves as preparation for a later update to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich:

  • Over the air (OTA) update to Software T769UVLF4:T-Mobile will push the update to  your device sometime between 7/16 and 8/5. We cannot expedite how soon we send  the OTA to individuals.    See below steps to manually request the OTA update.
  • Manual download: If you want to update to T769UVLF4 after July 17, you can update via Samsung Kies. Ensure you are on the latest version of Kies prior to attempting the update. See to confirm the version.


  • E911 issue over Wi-Fi resolved  
  • Echo issue when on Hearing Aid Compatibility (HAC) call  
  • Proximity Sensor improved

Sadly, T-Mobile left off the information of when exactly we may expect ICS to roll out to the device but you all can take comfort in knowing it will arrive eventually. Hopefully it's not too far off.

Source: T-Mobile

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4 years ago

Google now shipping the Nexus 7 to UK and Canada pre-order customers


What a pleasant way to start the day. Looks like Google is now starting to ship out pre-orders for the Nexus 7 over here in the UK. Received this morning just before 2am, came my own shipping notice from Google Play confirming that my shiny new Nexus 7 has been shipped. 

By my reckoning, it should be arriving on Thursday -- 2 day shipping in mind -- which would sit with the original July 19 date that other, high street retailers, started working to when their initial pre-order pages went up. It does take upto 24 hours for the TNT tracking reference to go live though, so if you've woken to a similar email, bear that in mind as you frantically hit the tracking page. 

The question goes out to our friends in the other -- non U.S. -- countries that are still waiting on their Nexus 7 shipments. Hit us up in the comments below and let us know where you are if you've just received the same email.

Update: Looks like we can count our Canadian friends in too, with this statement present on the Google Play support page:

We're now shipping Nexus 7 preorders. All US and Australia preorders are scheduled to ship by July 17th. UK and Canada preorders have also begun shipping in waves.

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4 years ago

ClockworkMod Recovery 6 for the Galaxy Nexus now in ROM Manager


ClockworkMod recovery has hit version 6 for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, and it's available right from ROM Manager for the GSM, Sprint, and Verizon versions. The change log for version 6 reads as follows:

  • New backup format that de-duplicates data between backups.
  • Faster backups.
  • Fixed restores > 2GB.
  • Minor UI tweaks (new background, animated Android)

Interesting set of features. The de-duplication of data will make for smaller and faster backups, which we all can appreciate. If you're rooted and ROM'd on your Galaxy Nexus, you'll surely want to check this out.

Source: +Koushik Dutta. Thanks, Chris G!

​Download ROM Manager from Google Play

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4 years ago

T-Mobile Galaxy Note is officially official


T-Mobile has sent out a press release letting us know that the Samsung Galaxy Note will be coming "in the coming weeks", confirming the Tweet that went out this morning. The 5.3-inch T-Mobile Galaxy Note will feature HSPA+42 speeds, and be running the Qualcomm Snapdragon like it's counterpart on AT&T. It's also shipping with Ice Cream Sandwich, and features the same great S-Memo application we saw last week

T-Mobile specific features are Wifi calling, a 5-device mobile hotspot capability, and S.A.F.E. (Samsung Approved for Enterprise) designation, which means a full suite of enterprise-ready features and capabilities, IT policy support, AES256-bit encryption, enhanced support for Microsoft Exchange, and integrated VPN support. You can read the full press release after the break.

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4 years ago

Motorola knocks $100 off the MOTOACTV price tag, hopes to help you drop some pounds


We have heard all about the Motorola MOTOACTV, it has been launched around the world, and updated countless times, but for many the price was what held them back. It appears as though Motorola may have realized that they came in a bit high, and that there was a bunch of competition in the market for a lower price, and they have decided to drop the price by $100. Now ringing in at only $149 for the 8GB model and $199 for the 16GB model, the MOTOACTV is more competetive in the market, and hopes to attract some new users. 

Be sure to check out our full review of this great little activity tracker, and be sure to give it a second consideration at the new price point, your health will thank you.

Source: Motorola; via: Engadget

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4 years ago

LG Optimus Vu sighted wearing Verizon branding


You may not have heard of the Optimus Vu, LG's answer to the Samsung Galaxy Note. The Vu is a 4:3 aspect ratio, 5-inch phone with pen input, released in South Korea earlier this year running Android 2.3 Gingerbread, and it's due for an ICS update any day now. It's also yet to appear at all outside of Korea, so it's somewhat surprising to see it emerge today, apparently sporting a big Verizon Wireless logo atop its squarish XGA display.

The image above, and a few more, have been published by ​Android Police​, and by all accounts they appear to show a Verizon Optimus Vu (or LG VS950) running Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich, with Big Red's logo up top, and its 4G LTE branding around the back.

First announced at MWC in February, the Vu hasn't made too much of a splash on the smartphone world, so it's a little puzzling to see it as a candidate to appear on Verizon's network now. We should also point out that just because one prototype unit exists, it doesn't necessarily follow that the Vu will actually launch on Verizon. We've been through that before (hey there, HTC Merge).

So we'll have to wait and see. In the meantime, you can find out all about the Optimus Vu in our hands-on non-unboxing unboxing of the Korean version.

Source: Android Police; via: The Verge

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4 years ago

Increased download speeds, No Flash woes [From the Forums]


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

Oscura review - spooky, simple, and challenging


Earlier this month, an abstract Android title by MTV called Oscura slashed its price in half, and continues to rank highly among the top paid games in Google Play. Oscura has a minimal, silhouetted style that bears a striking similarity to an indie PC game Limbo, not that that's a bad thing - it suits mobile wonderfully.  

The premise is a little on the fairy tale side, yet doesn't stop the game from being tense or downright scary at times. There's a lighthouse that keeps dark creatures at bay. One day it explodes and the impish keeper, Oscura, has to run out, collect the scattered light shards and restore protection to the lands. Of course, with the lighthouse out of commission, it leaves the doors wide open for red-eyed monsters to roam freely, making Oscura's repair mission a fair bit more challenging. 

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4 years ago

Nexus 7 bootloader unlocking and rooting -- the definitive video tutorial


We're big fans of folks learning just what they are doing when it comes to hacking at their devices. One click root applications are fine and dandy, but when (not if) something goes wrong one day and you're forced to manually connect and attempt to fix your phone or tablet you would be glad you installed the right tools and learned a little bit beforehand. This all goes double for a Nexus device -- they are built for unlocking and hacking.

AC Super Moderator ragnarokx, who is also one of those folks who isn't afraid to dive in and see how things work, feels the same way. He's put together what we think is the ultimate manual unlocking and rooting tutorial for the Nexus 7 you'll find on the Internet. He gives you every file you need (without forcing you to download a bunch you don't), and walks through each and every step with an excellent video. 

It looks like a lot of folks will be getting their Nexus 7 tomorrow, so it's awesome that Casey has things ready for ya. You can check out the video after the break, and visit the Nexus 7 forums to read through. Be sure to thank ragnarokx while you're there!

Unlock, Root, & Clockwork for the Nexus 7 Tablet

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4 years ago

IM+ updated for Android with a host of new features


The popular cross platform instant messaging app IM+ from Shape Services has received a nice update today bringing some welcomed new features. I'm a big fan of the app, having used it on iOS, BlackBerry and Android over the last couple of years. With a host of integrated services, such as Skype, Gtalk and Facebook just to name a few, SMS may well be a thing of the past. IM+ also includes Beep, a free mobile to mobile in-app messenger. If you want to manage all your instant messaging clients in once place then IM+ gets my vote.

If you haven't tried IM+ before now may be a good time to do so.

New to version 6.3 are the following features:

  • Significantly improved battery life.
  • Message Queue: Outgoing messages are queued is network not available and will be sent upon reconnection.
  • New IM services: mig33, SINA Wiebo, Mamba.Ru and Fetion.
  • Option to set master password: App can not be launched without password being entered.
  • Contact list can now be grouped by accounts
  • Preview to links for images and video in chat window.
  • Option to expand/collapse chat groups in charts tab.
  • Option to import accounts and settings from IM+ to IM+ Pro.
  • Option to disable system notifications for AOL and AIM IM service.

Download: IM+

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4 years ago

Weekly photo contest winners: Markers


Another photo contest is in the can, and we get a handful of really cool artwork to show off from it. Last week's contest is proof that Android fans can draw just as well (maybe even better) than they can photograph, and that the Markers app kicks as much butt as I always thought it did. Ask anyone who entered, and I bet they'll tell you it's an addictive little application.

We picked five winners this go around, and each will be getting a stylus from ShopAndroid so they can make even more and even better drawings on their phones and tablets. If you see your drawing below, be sure to check the e-mail you used to register with AC for instructions on how to claim your prize. Click through the break to see the winners, and keep an eye out for the next contest from AC!

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4 years ago

ZTE shares fall 17% following bleak profit warnings


Following a warning that their half year profits could drop by up to 80%, shares in Chinese manufacturer, ZTE, dropped by 17% to a 3-year low. 

The news continues a run of bad press for ZTE in recent weeks, with reports emerging that allege an FBI investigation also hangs over them amid investigations around the sale of banned equipment to Iran. 

ZTE, like fellow Chinese OEM Huawei, is trying to break into the western market with their latest range of Android devices. Indeed, this week we're promised the unveiling of an 'advanced gaming smartphone' at an event being held in London. Given the bleak financial outlook, an game-centric device may not be the way to turn things around, but on that front we'll just have to wait and see. 

Source: BBC News

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