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4 years ago

Last-minute stocking stuffer: ZOMM Wireless Leash

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Here's a fun little last-minute gift for an Android-lover who's always leaving their phone laying around. The ZOMM Wireless Leash, as the name suggests, is a slick little way to help make sure your phone stays nearby.

The ZOMM connects to your phone via Bluetooth. You then register it online and connect to the ZOMM desktop software, which lets you update the firmware and adjust settings, like how far away the puck has to get before it triggers an alarm. And that, in a nutshell, is that. If the puck is separated from the phone, it starts with a little buzz. And then a beep, letting you know that you've got the puck, but not the phone. 

The ZOMM also serves as a hands-free Bluetooth speakerphone, and has one-touch emergency dialing to 911 and serves as a panic alarm.

Connecting the ZOMM to our phone was easy enough -- standard (awful) Bluetooth procedure. And it worked as advertised. Walk too far away, and the alarm sounds. The speakerphone, unsurprisingly, isn't all that great. And frankly if we're that close to the phone, we're just going to use the phone's speakerphone. But the easy 911 access is great, especially if you're using the included keychain with the ZOMM. Very handy.

The ZOMM isn't a "find my phone" tool -- it's more of a "hey, don't forget that" tool. It's still up to you to know where your phone is -- or to find it if you don't. But it's pretty darn handy. And while it's not cheap, neither does it break the bank at around $75. Check out ZOMM's promo video after the break.

ZOMM at Amazon (black, white, pink)
More: ZOMM Wireless Leash

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4 years ago

ASUS Transformer Prime games

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The ASUS Transformer Prime is the first of the next generation Android tablets, packing the brand new quad-core Tegra 3 chip and offering a boatload of performance while managing the battery life.  We've sort of fell in love with it because of it's thin and light build and the way it runs Honeycomb.  It would be the tablet to get if you're in the market for one.

Something that you've heard us (well, mostly me) talk about is how well this beast handles games.  All the beef under the hood is great for normal daily use, and it handles multimedia very nicely, but cracking open some games that really tax the system was something we had to show you.  That's where I come in.  As a child at heart, I love to spend some time playing games on my tablet, and have grown to love more than a few of the great ones developed for Android.  The Prime takes everything to a new level -- both games that have been optimized by NVIDIA, as well as standard OpenGL games built for all devices.  While some of it you just can't tell from a video -- things like colors and lighting effects -- some things you sure can.  Hit the break, and check out how smooth and fluid the Prime runs a handful of CPU eating 3D games that I throw at it.

I love my job.

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4 years ago

Firefox 9 hits the Android Market - brings new tablet UI, faster start-up and more

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

If you are a Firefox user on the computer odds are that you have already tried Firefox for Android, but if not there is no better time to do so then now. Featuring a freshly redesigned tablet interface, some additional features along with a faster start up time they are certainly aiming to bring the best possible experience to mobile. In addition they have opened up camera support so developers can now integrate camera functionality directly into websites, which is a pretty neat feature. So whether you currently use Firefox for Android or not, you will certainly want to hit the break and grab it from the download links!

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4 years ago

Enter to win a free Galaxy Nexus and $100 in Rebtel credits!

Who wants to win a new phone for Christmas? Rebtel is sponsoring another giveaway to celebrate the release of Rebtel 2.0 for Android. This time the grand prize is a Verizon Galaxy Nexus plus $100 in calling credits, and nine runners up will receive $50 in calling credits!

The new Android app facilitates an immediate and seamless transition to Rebtel's high-quality VoIP service when a caller punches in an international number, making the call free when connected to another Rebtel user. Unlike similar applications, Rebtel 2.0 for Android will also intercept international calls to non-Rebtel users, providing the caller with service that is up to 90% cheaper than the international calling rates charged by an average carrier, and up to 85% cheaper than Skype.

To get yourself entered in this contest, leave a comment in the forums at the link below and tell us who you would call with your new Galaxy Nexus and Rebtel credits if you are chosen as the winner. Only enter once, as multiple entries won't count. Please be aware that Rebtel is providing the phone and calling credits, it's up to you to get service. We'll choose winners Sunday night and notify them by email. Good luck!

Enter the Rebtel giveaway to win a Galaxy Nexus and Rebtel credits

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4 years ago

How to watch the Android Central Podcast on your Google TV

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Google TV might not have taken off like some folks expected it to, but those of us who use it (especially with the Honeycomb/Google TV 2.0 update) know that it can be a great way to get the web into your living room.  A cool thing I've been fooling with is watching my podcasts on the 42-incher while kicked back in my recliner, so I'm sharing my guide for watching the Android Central Podcast on your Google TV with everyone.  Wait until you see our pretty faces in high-def on the big screen!  Hit the break and follow along.

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4 years ago

MOTOACTV update brings longer battery life, other goodies

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The MOTOACTV update announced by Motorola earlier this month is now pushing to all 8GB models, with 16GB models set to receieve it "within the next week." Software version 4.55.76 and 4.56.76 (for the smaller and larger models respectively) bring a big boost in battery life-- up to 8 hours of continuous outdoor activity. Also included are screen optimizations, bug fixes, and Multi Sport, which adds the ability to include multiple activites into your total workout. Full list of improvements are at the Motorola Forum link below, and be sure to share when you receive the update.

Source: Motorola; Motorola Owners' Forum

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4 years ago

Happy Holidays from Building 44

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Awesome. Nicely done, Googlers!

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4 years ago

Swype beta adds Dragon Dictation, more languages, also likes mosh pits

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Swype has announced another update to its beta app, bringing some pretty neat features and adding some additional languages support. This update brings Dragon Dictation to the keyboard, adds more than 50 languages for input, and they are continuing to expand the list through 2012. The update is rolling out, and it could take up to 72 hours to appear on your device, but you can manually check for the update as well. Swype advises they may bounce some downloads so if you are seeing errors, please just try again at a later time.

Source: Swype

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4 years ago

Verizon says service 'returning to normal'

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Just got word back from Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney about the overnight/early morning 4G LTE outage. Here 'tis:

"Verizon Wireless 4G LTE service is returning to normal this morning after company engineers worked to resolve an issue with the 4G network during the early morning hours today.   Throughout this time, 4G LTE customers were able to make voice calls and send and receive text messages. The 3G data network operated normally."

Hopefully things should be back to normal and we can all go back to worrying about signal strength and battery life.

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4 years ago

Ice Cream Sandwich ROM for the HTC Sensation leaks out

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Are you an HTC Sensation owner looking to get a taste of some Ice Cream Sandwich? RCTeam over at XDA Developers released a Sense based ICS ROM, giving us a glimpse of what we can expect from Sense ICS builds. Featuring some UI changes, it appears as though the Sense dock some of us have grown to love is no longer there, it has been replaced with a more standard looking dock. The lockscreen now features the ability to launch into folders instead of just single applications, as well as face unlock and more. 

Looking for something new to play around with on your Sensation? Be sure to hit the source link and let us know how it works out for you!

Source: XDA

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4 years ago

Conan takes on the Amazon Kindle Fire

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Catch the Conan show last night? Team Coco took on the Amazon Kindle Fire, which appears to be popular enough to merrit lambasting on the late-night show. It's quick, it's pointed, and, yeah, it's got a bit of truth to it. Check it out.

Source: Team Coco; thanks, Susannah!

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4 years ago

DroidDoodle - Remember us?

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Three months old, three years old, what's the difference these days? 

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4 years ago

Sony Ericsson says Ice Cream Sandwich updates start in late March/early April

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Sony Ericsson already told us which of its phones will be the first to get Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Today it's giving us a time frame.

Toward the end of March or early April, the Xperia Arc S, Xperia Neo V and Xperia Ray will be the first to get Ice Cream Sandwich. The Xperia Arc, Xperia Play, Xperia Neo, Xperia Mini and Mini Pro, Xperia Active and Sony Ericsson Live with Walkman will start getting updates in late April/early May.

That's still some months away, of course, but kudos to Sony Ericsson for being so transparent about the process.

Source: Sony Ericsson

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4 years ago

Huawei promises 'smartest, fastest, most high-performing smartphone yet' in February

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Chinese smartphone and tablet manufacturer just hit us up to tease some new kit in 2012, promising we'll see "our smartest, fastest and most high-performing smartphone yet, taking a leap into the future of mobile communications." The announcement will come on the eve of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. 

Huawei has yet to really break into the U.S. market, though it does manufacture the uninspiring T-Mobile Springboard tablet. And while MWC isn't a U.S.-centric show, it is a high-profile show. And with Android Central in attendance yet again, you can bet we'll have plenty of American eyes pointed that way.

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4 years ago

Verizon in the midst of yet another major data outage

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Update: Looks like data's starting to come back for some of us. Still no word from Verizon yet.

Well, that's no good. Verizon Wireless is dead in the water this morning for what appears to be, well, most everybody this morning. 3G data ... dead. 4G data ... dead. Pick a 3G/4G LTE phone. It's dead. Phone calls can still be made, which means we're not overly worried about public safety. But it's yet another outage for Verizon, which already is the subject of much signal scrutiny these days.

More on the Next Great Data Outage of 2011 as we get it.

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