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5 years ago

Google revamps Google Music with an actual store

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As expected, Google this afternoon revamped Google Music, taking it out of beta, making it available to everyone -- and bringing online purchasing into the fold. That is, if you're in the United States.

And outside of purchasing music, the service will remain free.

"For music fans, we believe today's technologies ... bring with them the capability to dramatically improve the digital music experience, said Google's Jaime Rosenberg, director of digital content for Android." In fact, it's what consumers have come to expect."

Just as with the beta service, you can continue to upload your own music to Google Music and stream it back to any of your Android devices.

But the big change is in the Android Market. You'll now be able to discover, browse and purchase music from the Android Market. Everything in the music store has a 90-second preview, and songs are downloaded as 320kbps mp3s. Tracks will download directly to your music locker, so they'll be immediately available on all of your devices.

Of course, Google Music's going social, and your friends will play a big part in helping you discover music. When you purchase music, you're given the option of recommending the music on Google + (and as e-mail links to your lame friends not on Google+), and they'll be able to listen to the entire track -- or the entire album -- for free. That sharing extends to Android and iOS devices as well.

Googles' sweetened the deal with a bunch of exlusive, free music. The Rolling Stones have given six exclusive live records. Coldplay's given a live EP to the cause. Busta Rhymes (who was at the event in L.A.) is debuting his new album on Google Music. Plus, live albums from Pearl Jam, Shakira and the Dave Matthews Band. And Google's going to continue to give a free song a day -- it's given away more than 100 million so far.

So who's on board? Three of the four major labels have signed on -- EMI, Universal and Sony. Google's also got a bunch of independant labels, and more than 1,000 total are a part of Google Music.

Google's also given indepentent artists a place to share andn sell their music, with the Artist Hub. They can upload, set prices and have complete control over their content.

So when will you get it? The new version of the Google Music app is available now, as is the new version of the web market. The Android Market will be updated for purchases over the next few days (though we fully expect manual downloads pretty quickly).

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5 years ago

Android has 200 million device activations

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At the Google music event this afternoon, Google announced that they have activated their 200 millionth device.  That's a 100 million more than just six months ago. That's a whole heck of a lot of Android devices.

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5 years ago

Sprinkle update live in Android Market, opens up to all 2.3+ devices

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One of my favourite Tegra Zone games so far has to be Sprinkle. It's super addictive, challenging, fun to play, excellent graphics, a brilliant casual game. The only drawback has been it's reliance on the Tegra 2 chipset. That changes today though as the latest update has landed bringing with it compatibility for "all recent Android smartphones running Android 2.3 or greater." 

Please do note the word recent in that statement though, meaning it may not be compatible with all Gingerbread+ devices. To try it out though, why not hit the download link below to the also released today free version. Don't forget to check out our review of the game for a full hands on. 

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5 years ago

Win an Amazon Kindle Fire from Android Central

The Amazon Kindle Fire will be one of the hot items this holiday season, and it's poised to be one of the best selling tablets ever.  How cool would it be to win one from us?  You can do just that and get your hands on a Fire of your own, and it won't cost you a dime.  Whether you want to use it as is and enjoy all that Amazon has to offer, or if you want to hack the daylights out of it, the Fire looks like a heck of a nice unit.  Great specs like a dual-core CPU and very nice construction make this much more than a Kindle reader, and it has a very bright future.

Sounds good, right?  So head into the forums and enter to win, and we'll pick a winner at random Thursday Nov. 17.  Good luck to everyone!

Win an Amazon Kindle Fire

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5 years ago

Android 101: How to add a bookmark to your home screen

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5 years ago

Reminder: Google Music event live today at 5 p.m. EST / 2 p.m. PST

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Just a quick reminder that Google's cranking things up to 11 this afternoon in Los Angeles, and it's inviting everyone along with them. You, too, can watch in the comfort and safety of your own home as Google announces ... something ... related to music. All bets are on a proper music store, with some sort of "twist" along with it. Stay tuned, and hit youtube.com/android at 5 p.m. EST/2 p.m. PST for all the details.

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5 years ago

Nook Tablet shipping a day early, too

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Not content with letting that ... other tablet ... ship a day early, Barnes & Noble's dropped word that its new Nook Tablet -- be sure to check out our hands-on -- also has shipped a day early. In addition to being lovingly bludgeoned by it as soon as you enter one of BN's 700 brick-and-mortar stores, you can pick one up at Target, Radio Shack, OfficeMax, QVC, PC Richards, Fry's and hhgregg, or online, of course.

Source: Barnes & Noble

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5 years ago

Work begins on CyanogenMod 9, will be ready when it's ready

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In case you missed Steve Kondik's tweet a couple days ago after the Ice Cream Sandwich source code dropped, the CyanogenMod crew is now working on CM9. (CM8 was Honeycomb, which, of course, ain't really gonna happen.)

Do note that while Steve says "check back in 2 months," that really doesn't mean CM9 will be final on Jan. 14, 2012. It means things take a little while, so check back. It'll be ready when it's ready. Meanwhile, let's all look forward to CM7.2. (But here's to hoping for some ICS CM love in January.)

Source: @Cyanogen 1, 2

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5 years ago

Acer Iconia Tab A700 & A701 to feature 1920x1200 displays and a quad-core Tegra 3 processors?

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The spec war is in full effect, everyone wants to out do the competitors, and create something with much better specs than their last piece of hardware, and Acer is not one to be left out of this. The usual user agent files have it that their up and coming A700 and A701 Iconia Tabs will feature a Tegra 3 quad-core processor, along with a Full HD display with a resolution of 1920x1200. Amazing screen, crazy processor paired up with some Ice Cream Sandwich goodness at some point, what more could we ask for?

Source: Android.HD

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5 years ago

T-Mobile adds 11 cities to its 42Mbps roster, expands 21Mbps to 9 others

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T-Mobile today announced that it's launching its high-speed, 42Mbps network in 11 new markets today, and expanding its 21Mbps network in nine others.

Included in the HSPA+ 42 launch are: Bend, Medford and Corvallis, Ore.; Benton Harbor, Mich.; Bloomington, Champaign–Urbana and Springfield, Ill.; Columbus, Ga.; Hagerstown, Md.; Montgomery, Ala; and Yuba City, Calif.

Seeing HSPA+ 21 service for the first time are: Corvallis, Ore.; Decatur and Peoria, Ill.; Evansville, Ind.; Holland and Kalamazoo, Mich.; Santa Barbara, Calif; State College, Pa.; Yuba City, Calif.

Of course, you'll need the proper smartphone -- such as the Samsung Galaxy S II or HTC Amaze 4G -- to take advantage. Full presser's after the break.

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5 years ago

Qualcomm announces a load of new processors, and exclusive games for Android devices

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New chips with better performance and enhanced battery life are always welcomed in our devices, right? Well this morning Qualcomm announced some additions to their new lines of processors, bringing a next generation Snapdragon processor to all smartphone and tablet devices. These new processors, which were built from the ground up, not only aim to bring better power management and a significant performance boost, but it will also carry lower inventory costs, which is a huge plus. 

In addition to the processor announcement Qualcomm has also announced that they are looking to bring a bunch of high performance games to the Android platform, some of these titles include The Ball, Fight Game Heroes, and Galaga Special Edition. These titles will be aimed to take full advantage of the new processors, giving an unmatched gaming experience.

Source: Qualcomm

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5 years ago

Amazon UK has Galaxy Nexus slated for Dec. 2

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Ask any three retailers anywhere in the world when the Samsung Galaxy Nexus will actually go on sale, and you're likely to get three different answers. And now, Amazon UK's got the object of our affection slated for Dec. 2. Meanwhile, we still have no official date from Verizon here in the U.S., and we're closing in on a month since the phone was actually announced.

Source: Amazon UK; thanks, Bob!

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5 years ago

Vivid (the porn company) takes on the HTC Vivid (as in the phone)

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See, folks, you've gotta be careful when you're naming things, otherwise you might find yourself on the wrong end of porn. Wait. Back that thang up. Erm, we mean let's back up. Uhhh, start at the begnning.

Adult entertainment company Vivid Entertainment -- perhaps you know their work -- apparently has sent a cease-and-desist letter to HTC, claiming that the new HTC Vivid -- one of AT&T's first LTE Android smartphones -- is infringing on its trademarked name. The Verge confirmed the letter with HTC and rightfully notes that this could be Vivid Entertainment vigorously defending its trademarks (and of there's one way Vivid knows how to work, it's vigorously), as you're required to do in such cases.

But also remember that Vivid has already announced its own Google TV channel, so the lines are being blurred a little bit. That doesn't mean you're likely to see a dedicated porn phone anytime soon, though you'll recall how someone already thought there was one. And this isn't the first naming spat HTC's seen -- the HTC ChaCha's been targeted by an online search engine of the same name, and it was changed to the ChaChaCha in Spain because of translation issues.

Source: TMZ; More: The Verge

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5 years ago

Kindle Fire source code released

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There's the trifecta, folks. We've got ADB access on the Kindle Fire, you can already root the Kindle Fire with SuperOneClick, and Amazon's already dropped the source code for public consumption, which is darn nice of them (and also required under the open-source agreements used in Android).

Not a whole lot most of us can do with the binaries, but it's another big step on the road to custom ROMs.

Download: Kindle Fire Source Code; Source: Amazon; via BriefMobile
More in the Kindle Fire Forums

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5 years ago

Cox getting out of the wireless business, service shut-down scheduled for March 30, 2012

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Cox Wireless started off like many that in the wireless business that have come before and now long since passed. With big dreams and little bit of the 700Mhz spectrum they wanted to offer the best services possible to their customers and they even managed to release the HTC Hero and the HTC Desire but now they're calling it a wrap after having ultimately become nothing more then a Sprint MVNO that was on its way out to begin with. They've now expedited their exit and as such will be shutting down sales of wireless devices and services come November 16th with a complete departure and shut down now happening come March 30th, 2012. One more image can be found past the break -- you know, nail in the coffin so to speak.

Source: Cox; More: Engadget

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