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2 days ago

The best Chromebooks, as of April 2015

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Chromebook

They all run the same software, but there are big differences between these Chromebook models

We've done our best to keep up with Chromebook coverage here at Android Central for a variety of reasons, not the least of which being that we use these machines every single day. We spend time with every Chromebook model we can get our hands on, putting in full reviews whenever possible.

With the rapid pace of releases pumping out new Chromebooks on a regular basis it's hard to say what's "the best," but every so often we need to put our collective feet down and make a list — these are the best Chromebooks available as of April 2015.

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2 days ago

Android Central 233: Mouth Clarity and Crumpets

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Audio-only stream below

On today's podcast: Google serves up a double dose of T-Mobile and Sprint service with its new Project Fi. Plus, the LG Watch Urbane and LG G4 smartphone are nigh, and Alex is going to lose his stuff on Sony. Again.

Plus, we answer more of your questions live!

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2 days ago

First Impressions: The Xiaomi Mi 4i

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Xiaomi Mi 4i

Xiaomi launched its new flagship device, the Mi 4i, this week at a global premiere in New Delhi, India, and the mega event saw over 1,500 members of the Mi India community along with media and business partners. While Hugo Barra, Vice President of Xiaomi Global, took the wraps off the Mi 4i, Xiaomi founder and CEO, Lei Jun also made his maiden appearance in the country.

The Mi 4i will go on sale in India first, and starting in May will launch in Xiaomi's other markets — Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. We had some time to use the Mi 4i at the launch event, and here are our first impressions.

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2 days ago

The EU case against Google is reportedly based upon 19 complainants

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The case against Google that the European Commission has filed is said to be based on 19 complainants.

Google's upcoming battle with the European Commission is reportedly based upon 19 complainants, according to Re/code. We first learned of the groundwork being laid out for the case in the beginning of April, and mid-month the EU formally filed the charges.

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2 days ago

Grab the Android Auto-friendly Pioneer AVIC 8100NEX for $859 from Amazon

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Amazon is currently offering the Android Auto-friendly AVIC 8100NEX head unit for $859.99, almost 50 percent off its listed price.

The Pioneer AVIC 8100NEX has a MSRP of $1,400, though Amazon lists it for $1,699.99. While still expensive, if you were looking to get your hands on one of Pioneer's more advanced Android Auto units, the sale at $859.99 makes it a little easier.

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2 days ago

The Galaxy S6 edge: Here's what that crazy curved display can do

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The curved display on the Galaxy S6 edge can do quite a bit. But what you see is up to you.

As the name implies, the big selling point for the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge (and that "edge" indeed is lowercase, boys and girls) is, in fact, the edge. Or, rather, the edges. Both of them, sloping down from the top of the phone into the thin metal band that is the side of the phone.

But is it merely form? Or is there actually some function to the edge?

The answer, of course, is both. Here's what all you can do with those curved parts of the Samsung Galaxy 6 edge.

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3 days ago

Google Maps catches Android mascot red-handed urinating on Apple [Update]

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Update: Google has now confirmed our previous suspicions that the image was placed in Google Maps by a third party using its Map Maker feature. From The Washington Post:

"We're sorry for this inappropriate user-created content; we're working to remove it quickly," Google's Mara Harris said in an e-mailed statement. "We also learn from these issues, and we're constantly improving how we detect, prevent and handle bad edits." The vast majority of users who edit Google Maps provide "great contributions," Harris said."

Original story: Google's Android mascot seems to be up to no good as the troublesome chap, not to be mistaken with our well-behaved friend Lloyd (although he does enjoy travelling), was caught red-handed on Google Maps urinating on what appears to be the Apple logo.

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3 days ago

Verizon Wireless' Galaxy S6 is the best Galaxy S6

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Galaxy S6 edge on Verizon Wireless

Big Red gets a lot of shade thrown their way most days, but their version of the Galaxy S6 is my favorite by far.

It's an unpopular opinion on the Internet — at least in the highly vocal smartphone nerd corner of the Internet — but Verizon Wireless is an impressive mobile carrier in my book. My personal line on Verizon is from the golden age of unlimited data, and while it's not really fair to use that as a point in their favor now that those plans have been eradicated, I still have it and it's still nice, so I selfishly cling to it.

In exchange for that sweet, sweet line of unlimited data that works great everywhere I have ever traveled in the US, I put up with a lot of crap. I miss out on cool devices like the OnePlus One, the Nexus 6 got delayed by what felt like forever, and I still shudder when I think about what they did to the Sony Xperia Z3v this year. The devices I do get access to are usually full of apps I don't want, and the check mark tramp stamp on the back is a constant joke among some of my friends. Every once in a while it's worth it, like the time we Verizon users got a sweet red and black HTC One M8 or when the Droid Turbo turned out to be a particularly nice phone, but most of the time it's just sad.

For once, however, the Verizon version of a phone feels like an amazing upgrade. I'm talking about the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge, and it's all about the software.

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3 days ago

T-Mobile resumes sales of Sony Xperia Z3; available now for $499

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T-Mobile is once again selling the Sony Xperia Z3, a little over two weeks after discontinuing sales of the phone.

T-Mobile began selling the Xperia Z3 in October 2014, but then pulled the phone from sale earlier this month, after just six months on the market.

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3 days ago

Luxottica CEO says new version of Google Glass will be out soon

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Massimo Vian, the CEO of eyewear maker Luxottica, says its partnership with Google on Google Glass is still alive and a new version will be out soon.

Remarks made today by Massimo Vian of Luxottica during a general meeting in Milan, Italy may indicate that development of Google Glass continues at a solid pace. Luxottica announced a partnership with Google on their wearable device project in March 2014, but sales of the first-generation Google Glass Explorer Edition ended in January 2015.

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3 days ago

HTC One M9: A second opinion

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HTC One M9

The Android Central HTC One M9 review is our collective, in-depth guide to HTC's 2015 flagship, covering everything from hardware to software to camera quality. However with a major Android device like this, it's worth presenting a second opinion.

The HTC One M9 is the latest in a line of highly successful phones for HTC. 2013's M7 and 2014's M8 were among the best Android phones available at the time, and the past two generations of HTC One hardware hold up well to this day.

There were a couple of things about last year's M8 that held me back from using it more, however: The anxiety-inducing slipperiness of the curved metal body, and the generally disappointing Ultrapixel camera.

I've been using the M9 on and off this past month, and for the most part I've found it an enjoyable phone to use — certainly HTC's best to date. However the Taiwanese company hasn't overcome all of the shortcomings of its previous flagships. And with Samsung finally upping its game in a few important areas, not to mention the prospect of another strong LG flagship on the horizon, the M9 could have its work cut out.

With that in mind, let's take another look at HTC's 2015 flagship.

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3 days ago

The leather back for the LG G4 has a 12 week manufacturing process

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The backside of the LG G4 is not just your average leather; it is the finest leather they can find, and goes through a 12 week manufacturing process.

The LG G4 featuring a leather back is nothing new, but did you know that the manufacturing process for the back cover is a 12 week process? LG has outlined some additional information on the leather they selected for the back along with some details on the production process.

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3 days ago

Xiaomi posts video of Mi 4i launch event

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Xiaomi launched a new phone, the Mi 4i, in New Delhi, India on April 23, and they have posted the event online for everyone to check out.

If travel to New Delhi, India wasn't in your plans to check out the launch of the Xiaomi Mi 4i, you can now watch the video from the comfort of your own home. The 5-inch, $200 smartphone, packs some impressive specs into a budget flagship.

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3 days ago

Cricket Wireless adds unlimited calling and messaging to Canada to $50 and $60 a month plans

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Cricket Wireless is giving some of its customers access to unlimited calling and text, video and picture messaging to Canada at no extra cost.

The no-contract subsidiary of AT&T will add this feature to subscribers of its $50 a month Smart and $60 a month Pro plans.

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3 days ago

Haier has a smartwatch to help you keep track of your kids

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At the IFA Global Press Conference this week in Malta, we've had a look at a new smartwatch from European brand, Haier. Perhaps better known for producing white goods like washing machines and refrigerators, Haier's watch is something you give to your kids while retaining the smart features for yourself.

And it'll help you keep track of your kids.

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