3 years ago

AT&T HTC One X Android 4.2 + Sense 5.0 update now rolling out


A quick heads up for all you HTC One X owners on AT&T — as expected, the phone has started receiving its update to Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and HTC Sense 5.0. It's a big update for the One X, bringing a whole new user interface similar to that of the current HTC One family. Aside from general UI overhaul there's the new Sense home screen with HTC BlinkFeed, an updated Gallery and Camera UI, and automatic video highlights.

HTC's got a full breakdown of which Sense 5 features you will and won't get on the One X — and the One X+, which has already been updated — over on its update site.

Source: Android Central forums; More: HTC UpdatesThanks to everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

Get a UK SIM-free Moto X at launch for £330


If you look in the right place, you'll save £50 on the RRP

The UK launch of the Moto X left us disappointed with one key feature of the phone; its price. Moto announced the arrival of its current range topper with a pretty hefty price tag of £380, made worse by the current price of its American equivalent. This week the Moto X finally goes on sale across the UK, and if you know where to look you can pick one up for £50 less than that £380 RRP. 

Online retailers Expansys and Clove Technology are both offering the 16GB Moto X – in black only, white is exclusive to Phones 4U – for £330. Handtec is offering a very slight reduction on this, with a Moto X there costing you £328.80. All prices are inclusive of VAT. Clove is expecting stock from January 30, Expansys within three days at the time of writing, and Handtec is still taking pre-orders. 

So, while it's still maybe more than we'd have been hoping to pay for a 6-month old phone at this point, there are at least a few options to save yourselves a bit of cash on an outright purchase at launch. With Moto's recent – and fairly frequent – deals on the Moto X stateside, it'd be nice to see a similar promotion hit the UK at some point soon. 

More: Moto X Review, First look at the European Moto X

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3 years ago

AT&T giving $100 to anyone who activates a new line


Existing and potential AT&T customers, take note: The U.S. operator is offering up a $100 credit to anyone who activates a new postpaid line of service. And ... well, that's it. Open a new line, get $100. The offer's good through March 31. 

More: AT&T

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 gets a giant price in the UK


£649 with a free Gamepad with pre-orders for Samsung's giant tablet

Having been unveiled back at CES in Las Vegas a few weeks ago, Samsung's giant new Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 has been officially priced for the UK. And as we expected at the time, it's quite high. £649 worth of high to be precise. It's a lot of tablet for the money, sure, but still a pretty hefty investment. As a sweetener, if you pre-order through Samsung UK, you'll get yourself a free Gamepad thrown in for good measure. 

You can pick one up in either black or white, and shipping will start on February 4. For more on the Note Pro 12.2 and the Samsung Gamepad, be sure to check out our hands-on look at both devices!

More: Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 hands-on, Samsung Gamepad hands-on

Source: Samsung UK

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3 years ago

Sony Xperia Z1, three months on


After three months and a succession of software updates, what do we really think of Sony’s Xperia Z1?

The past year has been a pivotal one for Sony Mobile. After meandering through 2012 with a less than memorable product lineup, Sony introduced some of its strongest devices in 2013, along with a revamped design language. Among these was the company’s most impressive phone to date, the Xperia Z1, announced at the IFA conference in Berlin September and released shortly afterwards. The Z1 wasn’t a revolutionary change compared to the Xperia Z, Sony’s early-2013 standard-bearer, but it finally nailed a few important areas of the smartphone experience — specifically performance, battery life and camera.

I’ve been using the Z1 regularly over the past three months, and I’ve found that over the course of three successive software updates it’s become an even better phone than it was at launch. That said, some bugbears remain, and unfortunately many of them are longstanding issues common to Sony’s Xperia lineup.

Join us after the break for our long-term thoughts on the Sony Xperia Z1.

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3 years ago

Rose Gold Samsung Galaxy Note 3 now available on Verizon


$249.99 on contract, $649.99 without one, available for a 'limited time only'

Having been leaked and previously pictured, the Rose Gold version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is now available from Verizon. Well, available but currently backordered, and will ship on January 30. To snag one of these which Verizon says will be available for a 'limited time only' you'll need to drop $249.99 on a two-year contract, or $649.99 without a contract on the month-to-month basis. 

The Rose Gold Galaxy Note 3 is essentially the same as the white version, but with a bronze tinged trim around the outside of the phone, the home button, and the top of the S-Pen. If this is the phone for you, hit up the source link below to get your order in, and if you're thinking of switching from another carrier, be sure to check out the Verizon coverage maps before pulling the trigger. 

Source: Verizon

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3 years ago

Samsung partners with Carphone Warehouse to launch standalone stores in Europe


More than 60 Samsung stores to open across seven European countries

Samsung has announced that it's partnered with Carphone Warehouse to launch more than 60 standalone Samsung stores across Europe. The new Samsung stores will open in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Sweden and the Netherlands in the next three months, following a pilot scheme of three Samsung stores in Spain operated by Carphone.

The stores will have a "premium look and feel," and will sell Samsung phones, tablets, laptops and wearables, according to today's press release.

The development is interesting in light of Samsung's ongoing rivalry with Apple, which is famed for its global retail presence. Samsung has previously operated "stores within stores" at Carphone competitor Phones4u, as well as a flagship "experience" store at the Westfield Stratford City shopping center in London. However the launch of 60 standalone stores across major European countries takes things a step further, and Samsung will surely be hoping to strengthen its grip on the mobile market with this much expanded retail presence.

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3 years ago

UK Moto X available at Phones4u from today


Prices start at £379.95 on PAYG or £25 per month on 3G contract

Phones4u has announced that it's the first UK retailer to offer Motorola's Moto X for sale. The company says it's now offering Motorola's flagship handset on contract, pay as you go and SIM-free, both in-store and online. If you're looking to pick up a Moto X today you'll pay from £25 per month on 3G contracts or £29.99 on 4G. P4u's SIM-free price is £389.95, dropping to £379.95 if you buy on PAYG. And as previously announced, the retailer also has exclusivity over the white Moto X for the first three months of it's availability.

Phones4u's launch comes a few days ahead of the officially-announced Moto X UK street date of Feb. 1.

More: First look at the European Moto X in London, Moto X review

Source: Phones4u

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3 years ago

Tablet maker goes bust after row with retailer over Google services


'MyTablet' maker enters liquidation after Argos withholds £3.2m over lack of GMS license, The Guardian reports

Penryth, Wales-based hardware maker KMS has entered liquidation after a row with high street retailer Argos over use of Google Mobile Services on tablets without the proper license, according to The Guardian. KMS manufactured Argos' £99 "MyTablet" slate — released late last year along with a flurry of other low-priced Android tablets from UK retailers — as well as other low-cost Android tablets.

The newspaper reports that Argos withheld payments of £3.2 million ($5.3 million) from KMS after it discovered the company had loaded Google Mobile Services — the package including Maps, Gmail and the Play Store — onto its tablets without a license from Google. While the core Android OS is free and open-source, Google's proprietary services and apps are not, and manufacturers must obtain a GMS license in order to legally load them onto devices.

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3 years ago

Leaked images claim to show LG's new G Pro 2


Slim, rounded design with buttons on the back

We know that the LG G Pro 2, the company's big-screened follow-up to last year's Optimus G Pro, is coming next month, but for the moment that's about all the official info we have on the device. So today it's interesting to note the appearance of a couple of leaked images claiming to show the back and sides of LG's next oversized handset.

Korean site DC Inside has published two shots purportedly showing the upcoming device, and it appears LG's sticking with the G2's design language for its next big thing. The photos show G2-style back-mounted buttons, along with a camera and LED flash, and a similarly curved design. It seems loudspeaker has moved from the bottom trim, and now lives on the back panel. Besides these obvious details, it appears we're looking at a slim, curved chassis similar to that of recent LG high-enders.

Rumored G Pro 2 specs include a 6-inch Full HD display, 3GB of RAM and a Snapdragon 800 processor, though today's leak gives us no further info on the device's internals — or its software, which is said to be based on Android 4.4 KitKat. But with Mobile World Congress just a few weeks away, hopefully we won't have to wait long to learn more. Check past the break for one more photo.

Source: DC Inside; via: Engadget

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3 years ago

NVIDIA releases TegraZone app for all Android devices


For those who always wanted to discover Tegra-optimized games on your non-Tegra optimized device.

NVIDIA has expanded the potential install-base of its TegraZone app this afternoon, as it is now making the application available to all Android devices running Android 2.2 or higher. If you're not familiar, TegraZone is a game discovery "network" focused on titles optimized specifically for NVIDIA Tegra-powered devices. Think of it as a news blog, a mini-review site and a storefront all in one. You can read about new games, see what others think of them, and get pointed at Google play to download them.

Today's update won't make those games available for non-Tegra devices, but it does expose users to some great game titles — many of which are available in non-Tegra versions as well. The feature-list of the new version:

  • Supports Google Play Game Services – provides achievements for downloading games, submitting reviews and ratings, and spreading the word about games featured in TegraZone
  • Uses your Google+ login to personalize your TegraZone experience
  • TegraZone Collections will allow highlighting of special interest groups of games by feature, genre, or publisher
  • Sharing shortcut icon makes it easier to share via your favorite social network
  • Dynamic loading of additional content when you scroll to the bottom of games lists and news
  • Archived news items are now viewable

We understand the "why" here — you always want your product to be in front of as many eyes as possible. We're just not so sure users will want to do it this way. Using the TegraZone app on the Shield, for example, is a great way to discover new and upcoming titles to play. I'm not convinced I'll want to do the same on a device I can't play most of those titles on. You can grab the app at the Google Play link above and give it a spin.

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3 years ago

T-Mobile releases bizarre press release with fake quotes to bash AT&T


A new high — or rather a new low — for the Uncarrier

One of the few things T-Mobile is known for recently is using ... unconventional advertising methods. The nation's fourth-place carrier, led by CEO John Legere, is taking things one step further today with a satirical press release aimed directly at AT&T. Released strategically after AT&T's earnings report today, the fake press release pokes fun at AT&T's recently-announced promotion to pay customers $450 to switch back from T-Mobile. Written in completely non-traditional wording for a professional press release, it even goes so far as to include fake quotes from AT&T CEO Ralph de la Vega:

“Call it an awakening,” said Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO of AT&T Mobility, “but I felt it was time to really stir things up and put the customer first for a change.  And by “customer” I’m referring to our former customers who switch to T-Mobile, because our current customers don’t really qualify.”  De la Vega said that the new T-Mobile switching offer was custom designed to entice its millions of contract customers to go ahead and give T-Mobile a try. “If for any reason you don’t love T-Mobile’s 4G LTE network, which is now faster than ours, we’ll actually pay you up to $450 to come back to AT&T, I kid you not.”

The quote is followed by an admission, "Ok, De La Vega didn’t actually say that, but he might as well have." at the end. Some may see this as light-hearted poking fun at an opponent — something Legere loves to do on-stage and online — but this may just go a step too far. Legere himself follows up with a real quote in reaction to the fake one, acting flabbergasted that the CEO of AT&T would make such a revealing statement.

The press release finishes up with a full explanation of the fact that AT&T's $450 offer is so generous and matches up perfectly with its offering to pay off your ETF, giving you the chance to try T-Mobile "risk-free." Far after the press release itself ends, bold print reads, "Editor’s Note: The preceding mock press release was written with tongue firmly planted in cheek." Really, you don't say?

T-Mobile has also released a new advertisement that sums up the point much more elegantly with big bold letters. You can catch that after the break.

Source: T-Mobile

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3 years ago

Packaged Chrome apps come to Android and iOS with dev preview toolset


Existing and new Chrome apps can run on Android using today's new tools

The picture you see above is Google's future. No, not a poorly designed calculator application that doesn't even fill the window it is drawn in, but the code behind it. You see, the same code that runs this Chrome packaged application was used, line for line, to build this Android application.

This is a very big deal.

It's part of a new set of developer tools that Google has put out today, designed to do one thing — run "native" Chrome packaged applications on Android and iOS. Using a new set of scripts and tools built around Apache's Cordova, the toolchain can take your HTML, JavaScript and CSS files currently used to make Chrome apps and wrap them neatly into a package that compiles and runs natively on Android or iOS.

While I'll leave the iOS development to someone more familiar with the platform, I spent the afternoon checking out just what it takes to turn a Chrome app into an Android app. I was surprised to learn that it's not all that much.

Using a few simple commands your existing (or new) Chrome apps can be wrapped into a project that will open in an IDE like Eclipse, or one that will easily build its own apk file with just a few commands at a terminal. These apps can be installed just like any other app, and are even able to be uploaded to Google Play or Apple's App Store.

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3 years ago

AT&T Q4 2013 earnings are in: $18.4 billion wireless revenue, 566,000 customer adds


Postpaid churn of just 1.11%; data revenues up by 16% over Q4 2012

AT&T has just reported its Q4 2013 financial results where the company as a whole posted $33.2 billion in revenues in Q4, which is up 1.8 percent over last year, and $6.91 billion in net income. We like to focus on the wireless side of things, however, which are more relevant to the Android world.

For its wireless business, AT&T saw operating revenues increase by 4.5 percent year-over-year to $18.44 billion, with a 16 percent bump in data revenues making up a large portion of that growth. Net income still dipped in the quarter, however, due to high expenses — the end result was $3.92 billion in income, down 14.7 percent over Q3 2013 but up 54 percent over Q4 2012.

AT&T still managed to add a total of 556,000 net postpaid customers in the quarter, as well as 440,000 branded net tablet additions. That leaves the carrier with a total of 110.37 million customers, 72.6 million of which are postpaid. The carrier had record-low Q4 churn of 1.11 percent, although it was still several basis points above previous quarters in 2013. Phone-only ARPU was up 3.9 percent year-over-year as well, marking the 20th consecutive quarter that ARPU has increased.

Of the 7.9 million phones sold in the quarter, 93 percent were smartphones. AT&T also says its Next financing program was used for over one million device sales, equivalent to 15 percent of all postpaid smartphone additions and upgrades. A full 77 percent of AT&T's postpaid customers are using smartphones, up from 70 percent in Q4 2012.

Source: AT&T

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3 years ago

Rdio and Shazam expand partnership to 29 new countries


Search for music and listen with your Rdio subscription instantly in more places

Building on a partnership that started in late 2012 to let users find and instantly stream music they hear, Rdio and Shazam have expanded their music partnership to 29 new countries around the world. This means that Shazam users in a total of 35 countries can now identify music — in either the free or paid version of the app — and instantly listen to the tracks streaming via their Rdio music subscription.

And now with the latest version of Rdio, you can sync up and keep a history of all your Shazam-found tracks in your Rdio library. It's a big deal for music junkies out there who are always looking to discover new music, and this is a partnership that really pays off for all parties. You can grab the latest version of the Shazam app at the Play Store link above.

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