5 years ago

Page: Android activations still at 1.3 million a day


Google's Larry Page made it to the third-quarter earnings call (after missing the Q2 call). And in his opening remarks, he dropped the same activations numbers on us that we heard back in late September. More than a half-billion Android devices in the field, with more than 1.3 million activations per day. It's not overly surprising that the numbers haven't really changed in a month -- we just like shiny new things like everybody else.

And, as we pointed out this morning after Verizon's earnings call, it's still heads and shoulders above every other platform not named iPhone.

We're kibbitzing on the earnings call now. You can listen live after the break.

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5 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR HD Developer Edition goes on sale for $600


So, we've already seen today that Verizon has made available the trio of Droid RAZR devices -- the M, HD and HD MAXX if you're counting -- but let us not forget about that other RAZR device. That's right, alongside the regular RAZR devices going on sale is the Developer Edition. The contract-free, bootloader unlockable developer friendly RAZR HD is also available for purchase. It isn't cheap though, at $599.99 you'll be parting with a fair amount of your cash. 

It's a far cry from the release of the Developer Edition Samsung Galaxy S3 on Verizon too. The wait for the S3 went on so long that the regular one had been cracked open before it ever had chance to get into peoples hands. That made us sad, but the speediness of the Motorola release makes us happy. If this is the one you've been waiting on, hit the source link below and go get one. 

Source: Verizon

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5 years ago

LG Lucid gets ICS upgrade starting Friday


The LG Lucid is finally getting upgraded to Android 4.0. Verizon will start pushing the OS upgrade to users in phases, starting tomorrow. If you’re impatient, you can trigger the download from your computer, according to Verizon.

The mid-range device sports a 4-inch screen (just WVGA resolution only, however) and is powered by a 1.2 Ghz dual-core processor. Its main plus is being able to support 4G LTE, and in spite of its March 29 release date, has been stuck on Gingerbread till now.

The LG Lucid retails for $449.99 at Verizon, or $99.99 with a 2-year contract.

Source: Verizon Wireless

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5 years ago

Three UK pushing out Jelly Bean update for Samsung Galaxy S3


The Samsung Galaxy S3 Jelly Bean rollout continues, and this time we bring news of a British update pushing out. UK carrier Three is starting to push out Android 4.1.1 for their Galaxy S3 owners via an OTA update. The bigger story here perhaps is that Jelly Bean is rolling out to a carrier branded device, ahead of the unlocked versions. This pretty much never happens, so kudos to Three for making it happen. 

The update weighs in at a hefty 286MB, so you're going to want to be connected to WiFi before pulling the trigger. If you've yet to see an update notification, now would be the time to head into your settings and start tapping like mad on the "System Updates." Go on, we'll wait while you go check. 

If you've already seen the update drop, be sure to hit up the comments below with your thoughts. 

via Android Central Forums

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5 years ago

Google launches new, cheaper Samsung Chromebook


Chromebooks, Google's thin client browser-only laptop experiment, are getting a refresh today with a new cheaper option. The new Chromebook seems to have similar design features as the previous Samsung Series 5 model -- matte grey plastic and understated lines -- and is a generally nice looking device. The difference here is that this device will sell full-priced at $249, a huge drop from the $449 of the previous versions. Probably the most significant change with this release is the movement to an ARM processor from Intel previously.

The Samsung Chromebook now sports an Exynos 5 dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM, Wi-Fi and 16GB of storage (and 100GB of free Google Drive storage for 2 years). It has a 1366x768 11.6-inch matte display, and has USB 2.0, USB 3.0, HDMI and an SDcard slot.

The new $249 Chromebook goes on pre-order from online retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy and PC World starting today. Next week it will officially go on sale from the same retailers, as well as directly from Google via the Play Store.

Source: Google Chrome Blog; Engadget

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5 years ago

Google Play seller support coming to India


Google Play seller support is coming to India, and that's a really big deal. Previously, app developers based in India could only make free apps, obviously limiting their potential. Starting today, Indian developers can submit paid apps, in-app purchases and subscriptions to the Google Play Store. For existing free apps that are already published, developers can simply add in-app purchases while they work on publishing a paid version

Additionally, users purchasing apps in India can now purchase in their home currency. Google is encouraging all app developers to set proper pricing information for Indian Rupees as soon as possible.

India is one of the fastest growing areas for Android, with a 400-percent jump in device activations over the last year. Google notes that in the last 6 months, more apps have been downloaded in India than the past 3 years combined. These new changes will influence developers around the world to start offering more great apps, which certainly benefits everyone.

Source: Android Developers Blog

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5 years ago

LOVEFiLM details how the service will integrate into the UK Kindle Fire


The arrival of the Kindle Fire in the UK is hotly anticipated. The combination of an affordable tablet device, with Amazon's huge content libraries is extremely enticing. We've recently seen Cloud Drive and Cloud Player launch on these shores, both of which will play a crucial part in the content offerings on the Kindle Fire. One area that has offered a little confusion however, is how the promised TV and movie streaming content will be offered. 

Amazon owns UK based LOVEFiLM, a service that offers a range of on demand digital streaming media alongside physical rentals. We know that LOVEFiLM will be the provider for the Kindle Fire, but in what sense we're not 100% sure. There is no Android application that allows LOVEFiLM streaming at this time. However, a post on the company's blog today gives us a little more insight. 

From today, LOVEFiLM customers that log in on a PS3, Xbox or iPad. can choose to sign in to their accounts using their Amazon login details instead of their LOVEFiLM details. This step will be required if you wish to stream content on a Kindle Fire. If you don't use one of those three current devices, you won't see the option just yet.

Better still, if you bought an American Kindle Fire at any point in the last year, you'll soon start to see the LOVEFiLM content in the video app. Within the next week we're told. This also gives us a little more on how we're going to see this content. In short, it doesn't look like there will be any form of LOVEFiLM Android application, at least not yet. Video content will be available in the video app on the Kindle Fire. 

This is however great news if you're planning to buy a Kindle Fire. It looks like UK owners will receive the same seamless experience offered to our American friends. With Google yet to offer music, magazines or TV yet in the UK through Google Play, Amazon has a real opportunity to make an impression in the market. We're due to see the devices land for the first time on October 25. 

If you bought a US Kindle Fire though, be sure to let us know what the experience is like for you when the video content starts to appear. 

Source: LOVEFiLM

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5 years ago

AT&T LG Optimus G review


There's no doubt - LG's here. But will the Optimus G be here to stay?

When was the last time you were excited about an LG phone? It has been a while since the handset maker had both buzz and substance on its side; upon entering the Android market, LG lost a bit of its luster, and pitted against such fierce competition like Samsung and Apple, LG began its descent into the brink of obscurity. Enter the Optimus G. With its latest flagship model (and accompanying marketing blitz), LG hopes to regain its fair share of the spotlight, and reestablish itself as a major player in an increasingly crowded market.

Its strategy is simple: stuff a smartphone with the biggest and best specs, pump dollars into its marketing budget, and one-up nearly every other flagship on the market today. But will the strategy pay off, and will the Optimus G catch the eye of AT&T customers? After a week with the phone, I'm ready to make a prediction.

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5 years ago

Google Q3 2012 earnings released prematurely, revenues and operating income down


Google has released its earnings report for the third quarter of the year. For the three month period, Google pulled in $2.78 billion in operating income, 19% of its $14.1 billion in revenues. This is down on same quarter last year, where It had $3.08 billion in operating income. Motorola contributed $2.58 billion in revenues for the quarter, but still operated at a loss of $527 million. The bulk of those losses, $505 million, were attributed to the mobile side of Motorola.

Google's EPS (Earnings Per Share) were just $6.53, down from $8.33 in the same period last year. Google's stock slid nearly 10% on the earnings report, triggering a halt in trading. Hopefully we'll know more in the coming days as to the reasons behind its lackluster earnings.

The initial earnings report was a bit interesting, as the SEC filing was missing a quote from Google CEO Larry Page, and marked as "PENDING LARRY QUOTE." According to The Wall Street Journal, Google's earnings were indeed released ahead of schedule to the SEC without its knowledge, which triggered the quick slide in stock price. As Google's official statement reads:

"Earlier this morning RR Donnelley, the financial printer, informed us that they had filed our draft 8-K earnings statement without authorization. We have ceased trading on NASDAQ while we work to finalize the document. Once it's finalized we will release our earnings, resume trading on Nasdaq and hold our earnings call as normal."

This is quite a blunder for a company of Google's size, and it's clear that the protocols for filing its earnings were not followed. According to Google, earnings were not to be released at that time.

Update: Google has filed their official Q3 2012 earnings report directly, with a proper quote from CEO Larry Page:

“We had a strong quarter. Revenue was up 45 percent year-on-year, and, at just fourteen years old, we cleared our first $14 billion revenue quarter. I am also really excited about the progress we’re making creating a beautifully simple, intuitive Google experience across all devices.”

Google's official statement confirms the earnings numbers of the previous (premature) filing with the SEC, and will initiate trading of its stock for the rest of the day. The official investor earnings call is still scheduled for 1:30 PT / 4:30 ET.

We'll bring you more analysis of the earnings numbers later today.

Source: GoogleSEC; WSJ

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5 years ago

Swype Beta 1.3 released, brings dictionary backup, 'hotwords' and more


The latest beta of the Swype keyboard is out, and available to download from the Swype Beta website.

The popular third-party keyboard from Nuance Communications packs a number of new updates.

  • Dictionary backup & sync: Users’ personal dictionaries and word additions can be synced across mobile devices.
  • Three new tablet keyboard layouts: The original, a small and moveable one, and a split keyboard.
  • New themes.
  • Enhancements to the Chinese keyboard, and a new flick keyboard for the Japanese language. Language prediction has been updated for foreign languages, too.

And the last one is my favorite.

According to the official press release, the new keyboard could even update you with all those crazy things the kids are saying these days. Swype users can opt-in to receive new words so they can be up to date with “the newest ‘hotwords’, like ‘Gangnam Style’.”

That’s right, the K-pop revolution is taking over, and your keyboard is next.

Update: According to the Swype forums, the beta is broken on the Galaxy Nexus, with 4.1.2. Several users are complaining that upon selecting the Swype keyboard, it automatically closes and is replaced with the stock Android keyboard. (Thanks Jon!)

Source: Nuance Communications

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5 years ago

Apple loses appeal in UK High Court, must take out ads saying Samsung isn't a copycat


Apple has lost its appeal against a UK ruling in its long-running suit against Samsung, and will have to wear a little egg on its face for a while — a month, to be specific.

Back in July, the British High Court ruled that Samsung’s Galaxy Tab devices were not infringing Apple’s design patents, in part because Samsung’s devices were not as “cool”.

Thanks to this backhanded compliment of sorts, Apple was ordered to run ads saying Samsung has not infringed its rights, and to place a link for a month on its website to a notice affirming this. Naturally, Apple appealed against the decision, and today appeal judges ruled not to overturn the decision. According to reports from BBC News, the three judges said Apple had to “correct” the copycat label slapped on Samsung. “The acknowledgment must come from the horse’s mouth,” they said.

While Apple can still appeal to the UK's Supreme Court, ultimately it's just one chapter in the global legal conflict against Samsung’s Android devices, which has taken the companies to the US, the Netherlands, Spain, Germany and Australia. It's also a something of a coup for Samsung in light of its recent $1.05 billion fine for software and design patent infringements regarding the iPhone in the US.

Elsewhere, it’s been much less successful. In June, the Dutch court decided that Apple had to pay Samsung for infringing a patent related to how the iPad and iPhone connects to the Internet.

And last year in Australia, Apple wasn’t granted its wish to prevent Samsung from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the country.

Source: BBC News

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5 years ago

Verizon brings LTE to a whole bunch of new cities


Back at CTIA MobileCON, Verizon said it would launch a whole host of LTE locations on October 18th, pushing the total number over 400 nationally. Verizon has just put up a list of all of the locations either going live or getting improvements of coverage today, and it's staggering.

The new markets going live include:

  • Gadsden, AL
  • Chico-Oroville, CA
  • Vincennes, IN
  • Owensboro, KY
  • Augusta-Waterville, ME
  • Marquette, MI
  • Brainerd and Fergus Falls, MN
  • Hattiesburg and Laurel, MS
  • Columbia, MO
  • Grand Island, Norfolk and North Platte, NE
  • Clovis, NM
  • Jamestown, NY
  • Bend and Meford, OR
  • Amarillo and Victoria, TX
  • Aberdeen and Walla Walla, WA
  • Morgantown, WV.

If the first 23 cities weren't impressive enough, Verizon has also listed another 42 existing LTE markets that are receiving enhancements. You can see a full listing of the new and existing Verizon LTE markets at the source link below.

Source: Verizon

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5 years ago

Hands on and a quick unboxing of the HTC Desire X


This isn't our first time we have spent with the HTC Desire X, however we do now have in our possession a review unit that HTC kindly sent me today.

Although in comparison to some of the more recent HTC Android devices released the Desire X is pretty low down the line in terms of being near the top of the range - but that is where it is designed to sit. It is a low cost, mid range handset but still packs a pretty mean punch.

Powered by a 1GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 768MB of RAM and a 4-inch WVGA SuperLCD display the Desire X will suit many people down to the ground. With the familiar Sense UI present (now version 4.1), customers upgrading from an older HTC device will still find the Desire X familiar yet refreshing. Running Android Ice Cream Sandwich the Desire X may not be as up to date as some 'top of the range' phones but the general public probably won't know the difference and ICS runs smoothly and seamlessly on the handset.

Combined with a 5MP camera and the ability to capture photos while using the video camera, the Desire X will more than likely be one of those devices where a consumer walks into a phone shop and spots it on the shelf and automatically thinks how nice it both looks and feels.

We will of course have a full review of the HTC Desire X coming soon but in the meantime I hope the above video will keep you going if you are looking to purchase the device.

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5 years ago

Motorola Droid RAZR M, RAZR HD, and RAZR MAXX HD now available on Verizon


Motorola's latest batch of devices launched on Verizon today. Starting at the lower end is the Droid RAZR M, with a 4.3-inch 960 x 540 display and 2,000 mAh battery for $99.99 on a two-year contract. It's followed up by the Droid RAZR HD, which has a 4.7-inch 1280 x 720 screen and a 2,530 mAh battery starting at $199.99. If you want to go really big, there's the Droid RAZR MAXX HD which bumps up the battery to 3,300 mAh and adds another 16 GB of local storage, though it will cost you $299.99 plus the commitment. All of them have a dual-core 1.5 GHz processor, 1 GB of RAM, an 8 megapixel camera, and 4G LTE connectivity.  

If you're thinking of hitting up the Verizon online store and picking up any of these, be sure to check out our Droid RAZR HD and Droid RAZR M reviews first. Any takers, or is the lack of Jelly Bean at launch a deal-breaker? 

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5 years ago

A little perspective ...


Verizon this morning during its Q3 earnings call said it sold some 3.4 million Android smartphones, beating even the iPhone (3.1 million) for the quarter. We'll probably see that number shift a bit in the fourth quarter, given that the iPhone 5 didn't go on sale until Sept. 21 -- leaving only 10 days left in the quarter. So don't read too much into that.

But consider:

It's a two-horse race, still. And it's a good one.

And don't forget that Google's Q3 earnings will be released this afternoon.

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