Online retailer Expansys is offering quite a deal on the 64GB variant of the Nexus 6, slashing the price down to only $369. Normally, the 64GB Nexus 6 goes for $550, but the retailer is offering a $180 savings right now.
Motorola solidifies its position as the meat and potatoes of Android and serves up another helping of a palatable (if predictable) smartphone.
There's not a lot about the 2015 version of the Moto X — that is, the Pure Edition, or Moto X Style if you're outside the United States — that should surprise you, if you've at all been paying attention to what Motorola's been doing the past few years. Attractive (if not innovative) design. Stock Android, with a minimum of add-ons — and what custom software there is complements the Android experience instead of piling on.
That's been Motorola's MO since it got back to business in 2013, and it's Motorola's MO with its latest flagship smartphone.
So is this the phone to get at this point of 2015? Well, it depends.
With the rollout of Google Play Services 8.1 complete, Google has outlined the changes for developers to help them get their apps ready to make full use of it. Included in Play Services 8.1 is a number of new features and functionality, some of which you may visually see integrated into your favorite apps, and others come as behind the scenes changes.
According to new support documents, Telus is expecting to push the upcoming Android Marshmallow update to both the Nexus 5 and Nexus 6 beginning October 5. Google is hosting an event on September 29, in which it will likely reveal new hardware, along with more information about the release of the new OS.
Google and Samsung both want to handle your mobile payments, and each has its benefits.
Well this is all pretty confusing, isn't it? If you have a Samsung phone in the U.S. chances are you have two new apps on your phone — Android Pay, and Samsung Pay. Well, you have an Android phone from Samsung so we suppose that makes sense, but while these apps both aim to do the same thing — handle your mobile payments — they aren't actually related in any way. On the other side of things if you don't have a Samsung phone but you're starting to see plenty of advertising for Samsung Pay, you may be confused as to why you can't have it.
We're here to clarify the situation, explain the differences between these two payment platforms and help you choose which one to use and care about.
Samsung's Gear VR is about to get some more media streaming options, as both Twitch and Netflix will be making their way to the headset. Following the announcement of an all-new Gear VR headset, it was announced that both Netflix and Twitch will be making their way to the Gear VR store this afternoon.
Google has built a new technology to power its voice search, which the company says will make it even faster and more accurate. The new technology uses Connectionist Temporal Classification (CTC) and sequence discriminative training techniques.
Samsung will release a new version of its Gear VR headset in November. The new version will cost $99 and will go on sale first in the US, and Samsung says it will be available for consumers in time for the "Black Friday" holiday shopping season, The headset will be available in other parts of the world shortly afterwards.
What does a $400 phone camera get you nowadays? The only way to know is to compare it to one of the best phone cameras out there today.
This has undoubtedly been one of the best years for advancements in camera quality on Android phones, but at the same time we're seeing a huge push towards $400 phones that don't look or feel like midrange products. We've seen already how improved the camera on the Moto X Pure Edition is compared to another $400 phone, but against one of the best Android-powered cameras out there we've got some questions that need answered.
Here's our Samsung Galaxy S6 vs Moto X Pure Edition camera showdown. For each of these samples, the Moto X Pure Edition is on the left, and the Samsung Galaxy S6 is on the right. If you want to take a deeper look at these photos, a link to the uncompressed version straight off the cameras is available at the bottom of the article.
There's really no contest in this first compare. The slight breeze shaking this bunch of flowers was too much for the Moto X Pure Edition to capture an appropriate amount of detail, and the Galaxy S6 nailed every aspect of this shot. The colors are more accurate, the detail is incredible, and background isn't blown out like the Moto X Pure Edition.
For a full auto image captured seconds apart on a tripod, the only thing to blame here is the software.
Full Auto HDR
At first glance, these HDR shots at sunrise are incredibly similar. Samsung's photo is a little brighter than Motorola's, but the colors are almost identical and the image is visually pleasing in both samples.
Where you'll notice a huge difference in quality is when you zoom in on the full image. Samsung's foreground, specifically the water on the left, is not nearly as clear as the Moto X Pure Edition. If you zoom in on the boat on the right, you'll see a lot of grain in the S6 shot that doesn't exist on the Pure Edition. While both shots are great, Motorola takes the win here.
The goal for this photo was to focus on the bunch of yellow leaves high up in the tree, but also to see how well each phone handled exposing the foreground and background with no HDR enabled. Both cameras have an HDR Auto mode, but it was disabled for this shot.
As you can see, the Galaxy S6 clearly took the better photo. The background isn't blown out, the colors are significantly better, and the leaves are just as sharp as they are on the Moto X Pure Edition.
Specific focus detail shot
This is another photo where Motorola blew out the background, but the real difference in this photo is when you zoom in on the tree bark. Motorola captured way less detail than Samsung, and did so at a cooler temperature.
The Galaxy S6 was cleaner, sharper, and produced colors much closer to real life. There's really no comparing the two when you look closely.
Poor light outdoors
This is another photo where Samsung captured more light, but didn't necessarily capture a better image. Zooming in on the water and the boats will show a lot of grain on the S6 photo. Motorola's picture is more true to life, and despite the poor lighting and thick fox managed to capture a fair bit of detail.
There's really not a clear winner here. Both cameras did a great job, but both failed in significant ways. Motorola captured less light, and Samsung captured less detail.
Low light indoors
In a room with the shades drawn and the lights turned down low, these figurines aren't easy to get a good photo of. The Moto X Pure Edition did an OK job capturing a reasonable amount of light, but you can also see a fair bit of grain all around the image.
The Galaxy S6 looks brighter, warmer, and isn't quite as grainy around the figurines. It's clearly a better camera for this kind of picture.
It shouldn't come as a big shock that the Samsung Galaxy S6, and by extension the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, offer better cameras than the Moto X Pure Edition. The GS6 sells for right around $200 more than the Pure Edition, and that's the pricetag after it has been out for a few months. The Note 5 will run you even more, and for those higher price tags you expect a higher quality camera.
The question you have to ask yourself is whether the camera is actually $200+ better, keeping in mind what the specs for each of these phones look like side by side.
Our pals at Tom's Guide have spent countless hours researching and testing to see how the US carriers compare to each other. The findings reveal that T-Mobile is the best all-around carrier, with Verizon coming in a close second. When searching for a carrier, many people focus only on the service in their location, but the comparison goes far beyond that.
Verizon is now selling the Samsung Galaxy Tab E, a 9.6-inch Android 5.1.1-based tablet both online and in-store. The new tablet features a 5MP camera on the front, and a 2MP camera on the back, partnered with 16GB of internal storage that can be expanded with the use of a microSD card.
Amazon is expanding the reach of its Fire TV set-top box and its Fire TV Stick HDMI dongle to Japan. Both products are now available for pre-order in that country and Amazon Prime Video is also accessible in Japan as well.
We are surrounded by sub $400 Android phones from new companies trying to re-invent the Android phone, and while that's awesome for those of us simply unwilling to shell out $900 for something "top of the line" it means these companies really need something solid to offer customers in order to stand out. For Nextbit, the strategy is two-fold. You've got a unique cloud integration solution that acts as though your phone has an extra 100gb of non-local storage baked right in, and you've got the undeniably unique design of the Nextbit Robin.
We had a lot of questions about how the Nextbit Robin would actually work, so we sat down live last night to talk about how this phone would actually work. Here's what we learned.
Cloud security is a priority
The Nextbit folks are completely aware of the natural concerns whenever anyone mentions backing everything up to a data center somewhere, and there's no getting around that with clever features and a visually pleasing UI. Rather than trying to manage a data center on their own, Nextbit is using Amazon's AWS for the 100gb included with every Robin. Your data is encrypted when travelling from your phone to Nextbit's Amazon cloud, and it remains encrypted when sitting with Nextbit.
On top of an encrypted Amazon cloud, Nextbit will be working with a third-party security company to conduct regular audits of their systems to ensure your data remains secure.
Nextbit data management is designed to be automatic, but users have the final say
When your Nextbit Robin starts to run out of local storage, the phone will automatically start backing things up for you to save space. This includes offloading photos and video, locally stored documents, and even apps. It'll pulls the APK from infrequently used apps off your phone and leave a shadow icon for you to pull it back when you decide you want to use that app. When the app returns, your login is still there and your local data is still usable.
This sounds like a cool idea, right until your find yourself without access to data and the app you want is off in the cloud. To address this, Nextbit has a special interface tool that lets you pin apps you know you're going to need even if you don't use it particularly often. As the user, you control what is backed up and what gets sent away.
Nextbit Robin is totally unlocked, and there will be easy tools for flashing
Nectbit is baking some clever software into their version of Android, but if that's not your thing but you still really like the hardware you can do as you wish with the software. The Nextbit Robin will be sold unlocked, both SIM and bootloader, and if you want to flash a different image to your phone the Nextbit folks are totally cool with that. In fact, there's going to be tools and instructions available from Nextbit to make doing so easy.
We did ask if the Nextbit ROM would be something easily flashed to other devices as well, but currently the team isn't ready to make that commitment. Which makes sense, especially if the goal is to release a complete thought in the form of the Robin before getting crazy with third party phone support. We'll see how this develops in the future.
Ultimately it seems like the Nextbit team is well on their way to a great idea. The Nextbit Robin Kickstarter is still going strong for anyone who wants to get one of these phones at a discounted rate, and the company seems to think they are well on track to have this phone shipping by January. If you're still hoping to touch one of these phones for yourself before putting money down, Nextbit promises to have prototypes for people to touch at the Big Android BBQ in October.
The team behind Truedialer have been trying to change the way we look at the one app most people don't really think about, and so far the results have been impressive. Truedialer replaces the outdated notion of a Caller ID with realtime information about interactions with spam numbers, relevant information for callers while the call is coming in, and a slick interface for replacing the dialer that came with your phone.
Today the Truedialer folks are leveraging their huge userbase to roll out a new live busy signal feature, making it so you know another Truedialer user is available before you place the call.
The new update to the Truedialer app keeps an eye on your current status, which you'll see reflected as a green dot when you're completely available. If your calendar has an event where you've indicated you don't want to be disturbed, or you've got No Interruptions enabled on your phone, that status light will be red. This status light can be seen by other Truedialer users with your number, so when they go to call you that indicator will appear next to your name as a clear warning you aren't around.
If you need to reach someone as soon as they are available, Truedialer has a button for that.
If you need to reach someone as soon as they are available, Truedialer has a button for that. You can now ask to be notified when someone's notification light goes from red to green, letting you know they are ready to receive calls.
If you're already a Truedialer user, expect this update to start rolling out today. After having used the app for a couple of days now, the new features work exactly as advertised. The only thing missing is some kind of filter, a way to make it so you appear available to a select group of friends and family when you aren't available to everyone else, but it's not as though the feature stops calls from coming in so it's not a huge need out of the box. If you've been looking for more out of your dialer or contacts manager, Truedialer is worth a closer look.
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