Order the Google Pixel 2: Verizon | Best Buy | Shop: Black Friday 2017


3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S5 camera and gallery walkthrough video


Selective focus, Shot & More, 4K video and Studio Mode are just some of the GS5's new imaging features

Samsung introduces not only a new 16-megapixel sensor and a revamped flash to the Galaxy S5, but also a wealth of new software features to go with them. The revamped Samsung camera app mostly does away with the big carousel of shooting modes, arranging various features in a grid layout, accessible from the settings icon. Here's where you'll finds options like photo and video resolution — the GS5 shoots at up to 16MP in 16:9, 12MP in 4:3 and video at 4K — as well as the selective focus and HDR modes. The former takes a bunch of exposures, does a little math, and then lets you choose whether you want to focus on the foreground of background. (There's also a "pan focus" option that tries to keep everything sharp.) HDR has been revamped too, giving a live preview of what HDR images will look like. Capture speeds — generally, and in HDR mode in particular — are also noticeably improved.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Hands-on with LG's new mid-range, LTE-capable F70


LG's latest mid-ranger offers similar features to its higher-end smartphones

Prior to Mobile World Congress kicking off in Barcelona LG had pretty much shown its hand with a bunch of pre-announcements. As the show got underway, another became official with the latest F-Series device, the F70.

Unlike the G-Series devices like the G2 and G2 Pro, the F70 has a more 'traditional' look with the power and volume buttons on the sides. There's also no on-screen buttons, it continues LG's previous method of a physical home button with capacitive keys either side. But, this is still very recognizable as a current LG device.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Boeing reveals the Boeing Black — a super-secure smartphone for those with super security needs


This phone will self destruct in ten seconds…

In this day and age of malicious apps and intrusive government surveillance, you might be wondering how to keep your data secure. You could turn to a solution like the up-and-coming Geeksphone Blackphone, with a modified version of Android and sets of secure communications services. Or you could do what the government does and turn to Boeing.

Yes, Boeing. The company that makes massive jetliners, fighter jets, satellites, and all sorts of high tech military hardware is getting into the smartphone game. Their Android-powered entry is the ominously-named Boeing Black. Because stealth.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

HTC teases the all-new HTC One as having boomier BoomSound


#Beatboxing engineers

So… there's an all-new HTC One coming, and it has speakers that are good for a man making awesome sounds, moose mating calls, Viking sopranos, and two horns. The original HTC One's dual front-facing stereo BoomSound speakers sported a Class-D audio amplifier for the loudest, highest quality speakers we'd seen heard on a smartphone. The all-new HTC One, apparently, has redesigned audio components that make it more [womp womp]. We'll find out more next month.

Source: HTC (YouTube)

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Samsung announces new hexa- and octa-core Exynos 5 processors


Plus new camera sensors and radio chipsets

Mobile World Congress isn't just big smartphone announcements — like any big trade show there are announcements small and big, consumer and technical. This one trends more on the side of technical, and it's Samsung's latest application processors: the Exynos 5422 and Exynos 5260.

We'll start with the Exynos 5422, an octa-core chipset that, like previous Samsung octa-core processors, is really more like two quad core processors combined. The Exynos 5422 includes four powerful ARM Cortex-A15 cores that can be clocked up to a blazing 2.1GHz, and four ARM Cortex-A7 cores running at up to 1.5GHz for lighter loads. Samsung claims the Exynos 5422 can "deliver up to 34 percent higher performance than in previous Exynos Octa models." All this power means the processor can handle 4K displays with aplomb, though it's not likely we're going to see those any time soon, so that extra oomph can instead be directed at other tasks. The 28-nanometer process used to fabricate the Exynos 5422 is said to result in a 10% reduction in power consumption.

The Exynos 5260, on the other hand, is a hexa-core processor with two big 1.7GHz ARM Cortex-A15 cores paired with four 1.3GHz ARM Cortex-A7 cores. The 6-core model isn't quite as powerful as its 8-core brother, having both a lower clock speed and fewer cores, but Samsung still projects it to be able to handle displays all the way up to WQXGA (2560x1600). The Exynos 5260 is currently in production, while the Exynos 5422 is scheduled to start mass production in the first quarter of the year, so be looking for both in future Samsung products.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

A closer look at the Intel Merrifield 64-bit chipset


The reference device isn't bad either

Intel announced its first 64-bit chipsets for Android this week at Mobile World Congress. Following this we stopped by to take a closer look, including checking out the first Merrifield reference device. Since it's not a consumer product there was little point going too deep – so no hands on in the traditional sense – but we did learn a little more about the platform.

To recap; Intel announced two different 64-bit chipsets this week, Merrifield and Moorefield. The dual-core LTE Merrifield will be coming to market in the first half of 2014 while the quad-core LTE Moorefield will follow in the second half.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Verizon promo prices Moto X at a penny on contract


Just use coupon code VZWDEAL at checkout

Verizon just kicked off a promotion where any online checkout made until March 2 using the code VZWDEAL will get you the Moto X for no money down. Well, okay, a penny, if that counts. Normally the Moto X costs $49.99 on a two-year term, or $329.99 with financing. There are also all of the wonderful customization options available, plus the Verizon Moto X was just recently graced with an updated to Android 4.4.2.

Motorola was hinting earlier this week that we'd see a refresh on this device over the summer, so it may be worth your while to wait and see what they'll be offering. Anybody interested in getting in on this deal can snag the Moto X from the online store here. Takers?

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Your Galaxy S5 wants you to know it's powered by Android


New boot screen branding for Android on the GS5

Boot up the Samsung Galaxy S5 and you'll be presented with a new message below the usual boot-up logo. The Galaxy S5 isn't just a Galaxy S5 — it's "powered by Android," and that's exactly what you'll see at boot-up.

It's an interesting distinction for Android's biggest manufacturer, and not something we've witnessed in such a prominent place on any other handset. There's been much speculation recently surrounding developments in the relationship between Google and Samsung, and there's no doubt that an Android logo on the GS5's bootscreen will put Google's OS brand in front of a ton of eyeballs in the months ahead.

More: Samsung Galaxy S5 hands-on and initial review

Hat tip to Brian Klug

Read more and comment

3 years ago

LG kicks TD-LTE-enabled Optimus G Pro onto China Mobile, calls it LG-E985T


LG's smartphones in Korea, Europe, and the Americas might get cool makes like G Pro 2 and G Flex, but in China, they get numbers. Which is all as well, considering that when you get your phone onto China Mobile you get access to 750 million potential customers. So that's where you'll find the LG-E985T, with TD-LTE and FD-LTE in tow.

All things considered, the LG-E985T is actually a fairly well-specced phone. Considering it's more or less an LG Optimus G Pro with a few alterations, it ought well be. Its heart is a 1.7GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage (plus microSD expansion of up to 32GB). The display is a 5.5-inch 1080p IPS panel (ppi: 400) and there's a 13-megapixel rear camera with 2.1 megapixels up front. It's all powered by a removable 2940mAh battery. In addition to TD-LTE, the LG-E985T also supports FD-LTE, so China Mobile customers with the phone will be able to take their phone out into the broader world and still have proper 4G coverage.

The LG-E985T will launch running Android 4.2.2 and will be available in black and white colors. Availability on China Mobile beings this week, though pricing has not yet been announced.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Sony ditches permanent screen protectors for Xperia Z2 devices


'Anti-shatter film' no longer used on Xperia Z2 and Z2 Tablet

Good news for would-be Xperia Z2 buyers today, as one of our major bugbears with previous Sony smartphones has been consigned to history. At a meeting today at Mobile World Congress, Sony confirmed to Android Central that fixed screen protectors — officially known as "anti-shatter film" — are not used on the Xperia Z2 and Z2 Tablet. Instead Sony's latest smartphone and tablet are furnished in bare glass and metal, just as nature intended.

We've long bemoaned the use of the anti-shatter film on Sony phones, which scratches more easily than the reinforced glass of the display and gives the devices a more plasticky feel, while also picking up smudges and fingerprints. So it's great to see this finally addressed as Sony launches its 2014 portfolio.

Be sure to check out our Xperia Z2 and Z2 Tablet hands-on posts for more on both devices.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Sony Xperia M2 hands-on


Xperia Z series look and feel gets more affordable in Sony's latest mid-range handset

Alongside its new Xperia Z2 flagship smartphone and Xperia Z2 Tablet, Sony's also showing off a new mid-range offering, the Xperia M2, at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Based on the look and feel of the Xperia Z series, the M2 brings Sony's high-end "Omnibalance" design language to a more affordable product. With a qHD (960x540)-resolution 4.8-inch screen, the M2 won't be winning any awards for display sharpness — but colors do at least look bright and vivid.

Performance, too, is decent across the board. The M2's 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor seems just a little snappier than rivals like the Moto G. Imaging is another area where Sony's looking to differentiate from the mid-level competition. The phone boasts an 8-megaixel Exmor RS camera alongside its modular camera app, which includes AR (augmented reality) functionality, along with Superior Auto, Manual and other shooting modes.

On the software side, the M2 is running the previous Xperia UI, not the Android 4.4-based firmware found on the Z2. So instead you're running Jelly Bean and a UI that looks just a bit dated compared to Sony's latest and greatest software. Nevertheless, the phone runs a full suite of Sony apps including Walkman with Music Unlimited, Video Unlimited and the PlayStation app.

Check out our hands-on video after the break, along with more photos.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

ZTE Grand Memo II LTE hands-on


Early software and questionable build quality have us wondering what the future holds for this huge phone

ZTE has taken the wraps off of the second generation of its large device, the Grand Memo II LTE, here at MWC in Barcelona and we've had an opportunity for some quick hands-on time at the show. This device is definitely large, even in this world where 5-inch screens seem normal, with a full 6-inch 720 x 1280 display. ZTE mitigates some of the size issues with very small bezels around all sides and a 7.2mm thick body, but in the end it's still mildly unwieldy at best. While it feels pretty solid in the hand and isn't overly angular even with the lack of thickness, the build quality was really lacking on all of the units we had a chance to touch.

As a quick refresher, for specs we're looking at a Snapdragon 400 processor (although the confusion of whether or not it will eventually have an S800 still stands), paired up with 2GB of RAM, 3200mAh battery and a pair of cameras at 13MP and 5MP. The display looks pretty good to our eyes — it's an IPS panel — at the distance you usually hold large devices, although we do find the colors and brightness to be a bit lacking, at least in the trade show lighting scenario.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

In pictures: The Rose Gold Samsung Galaxy Note 3


On sale now and surprisingly attractive

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is already on sale to some folks globally in the new Rose Gold color scheme, but we've only physically seen one for the first time here at Mobile World Congress. Available in a black or white version, the Rose Gold is actually a more bronze colored trim that covers the edges and trims the home button, earpiece, camera stack and the Samsung logo on the rear.

Up close, both are surprisingly attractive. The Rose Gold is tasteful and not over-the-top, and the black one inparticular is a most handsome looking thing. If you can get it, that'd be the one we'd go for.

Otherwise it's the same Galaxy Note 3 we know and love. Head on past the break to see more.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S5 chipsets confirmed, Snapdragon 801 on-board


Also confirmed to be Octa-core Exynos variant for selected markets

The Samsung Galaxy S5 event passed by without too much detail on just what chipset is actually powering things. This morning, we've got word on two different versions for presumably different markets. Qualcomm has dropped word that its latest Snapdragon 801 is in fact inside the Galaxy S5, while there is also word from Samsung of an octa-core model that will launch in selected markets.

Read more and comment

3 years ago

Galaxy S5 ROM is a bit of a monster, taking up nearly 8GB of storage


That SD card slot Samsung keeps including in its phones? You're going to need it.

We have to preface what we're about to show you with the following statement: Pre-release device, lacking carrier customizations, yadda yadda. But what you see here is the storage listing on the just-announced Samsung Galaxy S5

And what you can see is that on the 16GB model of the Galaxy S5, half of the on-board storage is used up before the owner even turns on the phone. It's not quite as dire on the 32GB model of course (and remember that there's a little bit of funky math anyway, and you never get as much storage as manufacturers say), and Samsung will quickly tell you that's why you have the option to use a microSD card for expanded storage. It's something that we've seen before, and it's the same scenario. You need room for all those features and apps.

Still. When we're looking to buy the Samsung Galaxy S5 this April, we'll be opting for the 32-gigabyte version. Let's hope the U.S. carriers don't throw a wrench into that plan.

See more in our Galaxy S5 hands-on, and in our Galaxy S5 forums!

Read more and comment

Show More Headlines