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4 years ago

Chrome for Android gets an update, appears to break support for some custom ROMs

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Chrome Beta for Android has received a mystery update over in the Android Market, updating the mobile version of Google's browser to version 0.16. There's nothing in the changelog to indicate what's new in this version, but we've noticed no new features, so we can assume it's just the usual mix of bug fixes and performance tweaks.

However, if you're using CyanogenMod 9, or another ICS-based custom ROM, you may want to hold off updating, as there are reports in the Market comments section of this new version breaking things for those on using custom firmware. If you're running a custom ROM and still want to update, we recommend backing up your current version of Chrome before proceeding. Hopefully Google will be able to issue a fix for those affected before too long.

We've got Market links for you after the break.

Thanks, edhe!

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4 years ago

ViewSonic to bring 3 dual-SIM phones and a new ViewPad tablet to MWC

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ViewSonic doesn't want to be left out of all the fun at Mobile World Congress, and today we heard about three new dual-SIM phones, and we're hearing rumors about the ViewPad G70 tablet (pictured). All four devices will ship with ViewSonic's custom version of Ice Cream Sandwich, and are decidedly entry-level.

The ViewPad G70 is said to have a 7-inch, 1024 x 600 display, 4 GB of internal storage, 1 GB RAM, a 2 MP rear and front camera, microSD card slot, HDMI port and both a micro and mini USB port. The 3G version is expected to retail around $350.

Of the three dual-SIM phones ViewSonic will show off in Spain next week, the best of the three in terms of specs is the ViewPhone 4s, a 3.5-inch device with an IPS display at 640 x 960 resolution. It will have a 1 GHz processor, a 5 MP rear camera and VGA front camera, and of course the dual-SIM card setup as mentioned. The ViewPhone 4e is a 3.5-inch device with a 320 x 480 display, has a 650 MHz processor, and a 3 MP rear camera. Last, but not least (especially in terms of raw size), the ViewPhone 5e is a 5-inch device with a 480 x 800 resolution.

We've heard nothing about price or availability, but the fact that they are dual-SIM devices probably means that we'll see these in the far east or in eastern Europe. We'll know more next week. In the meantime, the pictures are after the break.

Source: KisPlay blog (Chinese). More: Mobile-Review

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note coming soon to Three UK

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Three UK announced today that the Samsung Galaxy Note will soon land on its network. Pricing and a release date have yet to be announced, though Three says that the Note will initially launch in white and will surf on the carrier's HSPA+ network. The 5.3 inch behemoth comes equipped with a 1.4 GHz dual-core processor, 16 GB of internal storage, an 8 megapixel camera, and a Super AMOLED display, and launched here in the States equipped with LTE this past week.

We reviewed the international version of the Note (the same one that Three will soon launch) back in November, and we were quite smitten with what has come to be known as Samsung's "phablet." While we wait for an official release date and pricing from Three, you can check out our review here

Source: Three UK

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4 years ago

Analyst says Google's own tablet to begin production in April, doesn't know much else

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An analyst with DisplaySearch (not exactly a household name) apparently has told CNET that Google will put its own tablet into production in April. And that's all he knows. No more. Quit asking.

However, Shim said it is not clear how Google will market the device. "I don't know how they plan on marketing it. If it's going to be a premium device, or if it's going to be a Kindle Fire type competitor," he said.

We generally don't put too much stock into reports like this for the obvious reasons. But if indeed Google is working on its own tablet, that time frame might make sense, seeing as how the Google IO developer conference was moved to the end of June from May. There also are no promises that it would be some sort of "Nexus tablet," no matter how hard the bloggers wish it to be so.

And as always, it's entirely possible it's all bunk.

Source: CNET; analyst image via Shutterstock

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4 years ago

Preview: Bell Mobile TV for Android - streaming live and on-demand

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One of Canada's big three carriers, Bell, recently shot me a build of their upcoming on-demand streaming TV app for Android and a Samsung Galaxy Note to try it out on. I've already established that I'm a fan of the Note's big screen, and I was eager to make use of it with some high-quality streaming video. That, plus it's a ton of fun taking screencaps of the evening news guy and drawing a moustache on him with the stylus. Nyuk, nyuk. 

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4 years ago

Motorola launching the MOTOLUXE with style in the UK

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Motorola's getting ready to launch the MOTOLUXE in the UK, and the invite we just received makes it look like it's going to be quite the soiree. Come March 8 in London, we'll get to see the "new ultra-vogue, ultra-stylish smartphone." Not sure if we'd go quite that far -- as you'll recall from our look at the MOTOLUXE at CES last month it's a fair-to-middlin' 4-inch Android 2.3 device with an 8MP camera and some nice UI tweaks.


Youtube link for mobile viewing

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4 years ago

ASUS EeePad Transformer Ice Cream Sandwich update now available!

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We said it was coming today (OK, ASUS said it was coming today), and sure enough the ASUS EeePad Transformer is in the midst of getting its Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update. In addition to the standard ICS features, you'll get the ability to use:

  • Create folders in the Home Screen
  • Quick launch of the camera from lock screen
  • Additional screen capture method
  • Additional browser functions
  • Special camera effects and photo editing
  • Swipe to close tasks or notifications
  • Font size modification
  • Other minor user interface changes

Go! Download! Now!

More: Transformer forums

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4 years ago

Sony Ericsson Xperia NX launches in Japan on NTT Docomo

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The Sony Ericsson Xperia NX, the Japanese variant of the Xperia S, has today launched nationwide in Japan on the country's largest carrier, NTT Docomo. As expected, the device is now available in black and white, just like the Xperia S. Interestingly, it seems the Xperia NX will retain the old-style Sony Ericsson branding, whereas international models will sport the new Sony-only branding.

The Xperia S, the NX's international cousin, is expected to make its debut in Europe from the second week of March, while the AT&T variant, the Xperia Ion, is slated for a Q2 release. For more on both devices, check out our hands-on comparison from CES.

Source: NTT Docomo

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4 years ago

Bobbi Brown Galaxy S II comes with matching make-up kit

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If that pink Galaxy S II was just too pedestrian for you, then good news! You'll soon be able to exchange your hard-earned cash for the exclusive Bobbi Brown version of the phone, which comes in a slightly different color, with a matching make-up kit. So it's pretty clear that Samsung's targeting women with this latest version of its most popular handset.

The only catch is that this version is available in Korea only for the moment. But we're sure you'll be able to find someone willing to import one for you, if you're mad enough to want this kind of thing. A special microsite will be going live later today at the source link, if you're interested in learning more.

Source: HowToLiveSmart; via: UnwiredView

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4 years ago

Acer bringing the Liquid Glow Ice Cream Sandwich phone to Mobile World Congress

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Acer has announced it'll bring the Liquid Glow Android 4.0 smartphone to Mobile World Congress next week in Barcelona, Spain. The Liquid Glow sports a 3.7-inch display and will be available in the colors you see here -- Sakura Pink, Alpine White and Cat's-eye Black. (Otherwise known as black, white and pink.) It's got a 5-megapixel rear camera with Flash, has NFC and will be available in the summer.

Source: Acer; More: Complete MWC coverage

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4 years ago

Recon Instruments to show off an Android-powered HUD at MWC

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Recon Instruments will be showing their patented, Android-powered HUD (Heads Up Display) in the Android booth at Mobile World Congress. Last month at CES Recon unveiled their HUD SDK for Android, and this time around we will get to see the MOD Live (Recon's name for this unit) in Barcelona. They're currently working with partners like Polar and Contour to third party apps to the HUD, but for now folks can use Recon’s free HQ Mobile app to access playlists on their phone, view and share run stats, see incoming calls, display text messages, and reply via the wearable wireless Bluetooth low energy remote. 

Currently available for snowsport enthusiasts, Recon plans to branch out to other outdoor sportsmen and partner with more manufacturers. Dan Eisenhardt, CEO of Recon Instruments says:

We are happy to be at the Mobile World Congress with Google at the Android stand. It is a great opportunity to show the diversity and customizable nature of our Android-powered MOD Live. Our HUD technology is currently available to snowsports enthusiasts and we will be bringing an adapted HUD solution into a number of different industries in the near future partnering with leading goggle, helmet and sunglasses brands to provide the optimum choice of fit, function and fashion to the public.

Recon Instruments' MOD Live currently works with Uvex, Briko, Zeal Optics, Alpina, and Scott and Smith brand "Recon Ready" goggles, and are available for $399.99 (€360) at major retailers around the globe. 

Now, about those Google Glasses. ...

More info:  Recon Instruments

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4 years ago

Late-night poll: Do you use a third party launcher?

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One of the best things about Android is that the OS allows us to customize things that are built deep into the system. Things like keyboards, or the messaging application, or the home launcher. Using applications from the market, it's easy to make our Android phones look and feel like our Android phones. Before we got a little taste of Ice Cream Sandwich, a custom home launcher was a must for many a power user. But did that change with the stock Android launcher? It's the most customizable stock launcher yet, and for many the new folder system and launcher bar are just what the doctor ordered. For others, they need even more. And what about third party vendors, and their versions of Android? The TouchWiz launcher is pretty customizable, and the Sense launcher looks beautiful. Even Blur has come a long way and we don't have a lot bad to say about it any longer.

There's plenty of pros and cons either way, so which camp do you fall in? Let us know in tonight's poll.

Do you use a custom third party launcher?

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4 years ago

Nova Launcher now available in Android Market in free and paid versions

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Nova Launcher has made it's way out of the beta stage and into the Android Market. This Ice Cream Sandwich launcher is chock full of features you won't find in the stock launcher, and comes highly recommended by our own Android Central forums Super Moderator Cyber Warrior. A look at the feature list and we see why:

Custom homescreen grid
Scrollable dock
Scroll effects
Infinite scrolling
Custom folder icons
Backup/Restore
Custom app icons

The paid version offers up even more, like gestures, dock swiping, and the ability to hide apps in your app drawer. 

If you found the stock Android launcher in ICS a bit lacking, you should really give Nova Launcher a look. It requires Android 4.0 and both free and a paid $4 version are available in the Market. We've got a link to the free version after the break.

via Android Central forums

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4 years ago

Foursquare update brings bunch o' bugfixes

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Android's Foursquare check-in app got an update this evening, bringing a few bugfixes. They are:

  • Bug fixes for the 2-08 release.
  • In-line commenting on Check-in Details.
  • Updated language translations.
  • Android Beam now redirects to the Android Market if receiving user doesn't have Foursquare.

Snag it now in the Android Market or at the link in this post.

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4 years ago

Droid X update v4.5.621.MB810 now rolling out to the masses

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We've known now for quite some time that it was coming but for all you Droid X owners out there, the v4.5.621.MB810 update is now rolling out to the masses.  As noted in the change log, this release covers a lot of bug fixes:

  • Prevents lockups or resets after the Over the Air (OTA) update.
  • OTA update notice screen displays the correct estimated update time.
  • Improved browser security with the Google Security Patch from Android 2.3.6.
  • Fixed issue where the device may power ON without user interaction.
  • Resolved possible device resets while playing music.
  • Adjusted camera settings will be saved, even after the device is powered down.
  • Reduced Out of Memory errors.
  • WAV files can be played from Visual Voice Mail.
  • Device is enabled with the Wireless Alerting System.
  • Improved stability of Music Player reduces resets.
  • Shortcuts to applications remain on the device even after applications are moved to the SD card.
  • Improved connectivity with 3G Mobile Hotspot data connectivity.
  • Addressed error that replicated thumbnails in message threads.
  • Corrected errors where Yahoo! mail notifications were not displayed properly.
  • Reduced duplicate message errors.
  • Improved ability to access and receive Gmail when the Mobile Hotspot is turned on.
  • Sorted contact groups.
  • Device recognizes Multimedia ringtones after purchase.
  • Button background lighting turns off while in the desktop cradle.

It's not Ice Cream Sandwich sadly but it's a massive update either way. Go ahead and check for software updates, it should be there. If not, sit tight it will be along shortly and don't forget to drop by the Android Central Droid X forums and let us know how it's working out for you when you get it.

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