4 years ago

HTC Merge review


The White Whale of Android smartphones finally emerges on a handful of regional carriers

There's something quite satifying about the HTC Merge on US Cellular. Maybe it's the sleek design. Maybe it's the excellent slider keyboard. Or maybe it's because it's our White Whale.

The HTC Merge (codenamed Lexikon) first made an appearance as a dual CDMA/GSM World Phone in early September 2010 when the FCC outed it, pictures and all. At the time, it was clearly branded for Verizon. And it was the Verizon version that we got an exclusive look at it just a month later. At that time, the Merge still had not been announced by Verizon.

And so days went by and turned into weeks. Weeks turned into months. Still no word on the Merge. Meanwhile, the Motorola Droid 2 (another horizontal slider released that fall) had already been revamped and gained a GSM radio, so it, too, would work outside the United States. Whether that's the reason the Verizon held back the Merge, we may never know. But on February 25, 2011 -- nearly five months after its inital FCC showing -- HTC announced that the Merge would be coming to "multiple carriers" in the spring.

It first saw release on Alltel and Cellular South. And, this June, on US Cellular. One thing those carriers have in common? They all piggyback on Verizon's network. That's not a coincidence. (And you actually can buy a Merge at a third-party retailer and actually use it on Verizon.)

And so we finally have the HTC Merge. This is its story.

HTC Merge Specs | HTC Merge ForumsHTC Merge Accessories

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4 years ago

HTC Thunderbolt gets teardown and repair video


Although everyone hopes to never have to use them -- teardown and repair videos are a great resource of information for those who may need to repair a busted device. Having relied on a few in the past due to purchasing some grey market devices that were not covered under warranty, I know this all too well. The folks from DirectFix know this as well, and their latest teardown and repair aims to help HTC Thunderbolt owners should such a situation arise. Whether you need to repair some broken glass or something more internal, you can head on past the break for the video to see just how it's done.

Source: DirectFix

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4 years ago

Samsung releases Infuse 4G open-source code


Samsung has released the open-source portions of the Infuse 4G OS and made it available for download at their Open Source Release Center website.  As is always the case, this isn't something that you can download and flash to your phone, it's code for developers to use to rebuild or tweak the system.  Everyone else just needs to sit tight, and feel good that Samsung is doing the right thing without needing to be reminded for a few months -- or years.

If you are the developer type, you can hit the source link and search for SGH-I997 to get to the download and release notes.  Then get busy!

Source: Samsung open Source Release Center

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4 years ago

Android Travel Tip: Know what time it is

4 years ago

Milestone 3 gets a complete run-through


Although the device has been caught on camera more times then we can count now -- its never been quite caught in quite such detail. Despite it not being the U.S. version, the Milestone 3 -- which may or may not come to market as the Droid 3 -- has just received a total break down of its screen, specs and even benchmarks courtesy of the folks from XDA.cn and it now we can confirm all those specs that have been rumored in the past.

  • 4-inch qHD Display
  • 8MP Rear Camera (1080p video capable)
  • VGA Front-Facing Camera
  •  1500mAh Battery
  • Dual-Core OMAP 4430 processor
  • 512MB of RAM
  • Updated MotoBlur

We're guessing those specs won't meet the expectations of the hardcore users out there but when this thing comes to market, we're sure it'll still sell quite a bit. You can jump on past the break for some more image of the device, benchmarks and more.

Source: XDA.cn; Thanks, everyone who sent this in!

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4 years ago

Droid 2 Global Gingerbread update set to roll out soon


With the Motorola Droid X and the Motorola Droid Pro having already got their Gingerbread love, it's now time for the Droid 2 Global to get the same attention. If you head on over to the Verizon website, you'll see the updated software update info page is now available for viewing and as we know from the past -- that typically indicates a soak-test is coming and then a full roll-out to the masses. Needless to say, it's coming soon and we'll be sure to let you all know as soon as it happens.

Source: Verizon; Via: Droid-Life

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4 years ago

The Oatmeal on Smartphones [NSFW-L]


Look around. If you don't know someone like this, chances are it's you. Now go read the whole comic.

Source: The Oatmeal

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4 years ago

Introducing Android Central Daily - our new daily mailer delivering the hottest Android news right to your inbox!


Enter your email address to subscribe to AC daily    

Looking for the latest Android news without leaving the comfort and safety of your inbox? Introducing the Android Central Daily -- a daily look at the latest and greatest Android News, reviews, rumors, musings, and whatever else we feel like putting in there.

The Android Central Daily gets delivered once a day. It's an opt-in signup -- meaning we're not sending you anything you're not specifically asking for. But you're going to want this. Your friends are going to want this. Your family is going to want this. Because, really, who doesn't want the best Android news from the best Android news site around?

So hit up the registration above. Welcome to the Android Central Daily.

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4 years ago

HTC Desire II, Wildfire S coming to US Cellular?


What's all this? Looks like US Cellular is in line to get itself the HTC Desire II (aka the Desire S) and Wildfire S (aka, erm, the Wildfire S) sometime in the near future, as it's popped up in the regional carrier's inventory.

The Desire II/S, of course, is the follow-up of last year's original Desire (see our review of the US Cellular version) that ups the specs a bit, as well as the version of HTC Sense. Same goes for the Wildfire S, which also gets improved specs and a slightly larger screen with the resolution upped to the barely tolerable 320x480.

But far be it from us to look an Android gift horse in the mouth. Let's hope we see these guys sooner rather than later.

Thanks, anon!

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4 years ago

HTC Flyer spotted at FCC, T-Mobile bands in tow


Read our HTC Flyer review

Oh T-Mobile, you sneaky thing, you. For all the talks of a buyout, you sure are charging forward, bringing more great devices to your catalog, like the HTC Flyer. HTC's 7-incher has just been spotted passing through the FCC, but equipped with 1700Mhz radios, a telltale sign it'll be running on T-Mobile's HSPA network.

Release dates are still shrouded in mystery, but Sprint's variant, the HTC EVO View 4G, is dropping on June 24, so perhaps T-Mobile's release won't be too far behind.

Source: FCC; via Engadget

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 takes flight with American Airlines as new airborne entertainment system


Read our Galaxy Tab 10.1 review

American Airlines has partnered with Samsung Mobile to bring the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 to select flights this year. The Galaxy Tab 10.1 will replace the personal entertainment devices currently outfitted in some premium cabins.

You'll be able to find the Galaxy Tab 10.1 on flights between New York's JFK and Los Angeles, JFK and San Francisco, and Miami and Los Angeles, if you're flying on either a 767-200 or 767-300. Internationally, flights to and from Europe and South America using 767-300 will also see the Tab 10.1, and flights departing Boston to Los Angeles on a 757 will also have the Tab 10.1.

Anyone a regular flier here? Looking forward to all the Tab 10.1 goodness you'll eventually be experiencing? At any rate, this is a huge boon for Samsung and the Android tablet market at large, so it'll be interesting to see how this plays out for other manufacturers in the future.

Source: Business Wire

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Phantom Probes


Phantom Probes is a physics-based psuedo-puzzle game that's all about using various probes (get your mind out of the gutter, guys!) to determine what shape an invisible shape actually is. If that sounds kind of boggling or confusing, you'll quickly understand why I included a reference video.

Despite the confusing description, this is actually a really fun game to play. Every level gives you three probes to use as well as three shapes to choose from when you think you've nailed the phantom shape's shape. The probes vary from level to level, as does the complexity of the shape's you're trying to predict.

From my experience (see: Level 2 in the video), the shape also is randomly chosen every level, so you can't just hammer your way through, guessing the shapes through a process of elimination to try and get a high ranking before moving onto the next level. To me, that's rather genius, cause it keeps you working to try and advance.

The attention to detail in Phantom Probes is worth mentioning, too, as some of the probes are absolutely brilliant for discerning what you're looking for. The weird, brown, wrap-around thing from Level 2 and the sonar wave from Level 4 both come to mind. Bubbles rising up from the bottom of the screen or paper clips and bullets bouncing off in all directions, it's really creative and keeps the game fresh.

There's a free version of Phantom Probes in the Market that lets you play the first 10 levels, and for a mere 99 cents, you're granted access to the full 50 levels this bad boy offers. If you're into mind benders and logic games, I wouldn't hesitate to hop on the Phantom Probes bandwagon. As always, download links and QR code is after the break.


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4 years ago

LG Optimus 3D listed for June 20 release in UK


Amazon UK is currently listing the LG Optimus 3D (SIM-free) for pre-order, with an expected release date of next Monday, June 20. At just a penny less than £600 (~$980), the Optimus 3D certainly isn't cheap, but if you can stomach spending that much on a smartphone, you'll walk away with a dual-core device with a 3D display and 3D video recording capabilities. Check out our initial hands-on feature to take a closer look at the phone itself.

Pre-order prices and shipping dates are always subject to change, but with the listed date just seven days away, we're expecting this one to be right on the money. The June 20 date also fits with release windows from T-Mobile UK and Three, who are expecting to begin selling the Optimus 3D in June and July respectively.

Source: Amazon UK; via: SoMobile

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4 years ago

CyanogenMod 7 freshly ported to the Motorola Droid X


It's something Motorola Droid X owners have been teased with before. But this time around, it could turn out quite well. Although it remains unreleased as of now, it looks like Motorola Droid X owners may soon be getting a chance to load up CyanogenMod 7 on their devices courtesy of @cvpcs. No, the bootloader hasn't been unlocked but thanks to some handy work making use of 2nd.init CyanogenMod 7 will now run on top of the Motorola kernels in the Droid X.

As with anything of this nature, some bugs are still present but it's surely only a matter of time before they get worked out. Some of the things that may or may not work currently are: GPS, 3G/data, camera, camcorder and bluetooth audio while radio, WiFi, USB, charging, sensors, lights, vibration, standard bluetooth are listed as working. The next few days will provide some more details but until then, jump into the Android Central forums to discuss it some more.

Source: Android Central Forums

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4 years ago

Toshiba Thrive pre-orders start today


The latest Honeycomb powered tablet to be announced, the Toshiba Thrive, is now up for pre-order at Office Depot.  While the date is listed only as "coming soon" (we were told mid July), the price is just as Toshiba announced it would be -- $479.99 for the 16GB version, and $579.99 for the 32GB version.  Noticeably absent is the $429.99 8GB option that was also announced, which may well disappoint some looking for the more frugal option. 

Office Depot has also posted a short video showing off the full size ports, removable battery, and color choices for the back. You'll find the link below to the Windows Media file, which probably won't play on your smartphone.  Bookmark this one for when you get home.

Toshiba proper's also got preorders, for the same prices.

Sources: Toshiba; Office Depot;  More: Features video (wmv).  Thanks, Lester!

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