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4 years ago

Hands-on with the Kyocera Hydro EDGE and Hydro XTRM

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Two ruggedized mid-range devices destined for Sprint, Boost and U.S. Cellular

Making their appearance as successors to the original Kyocera Hydro, the Hydro EDGE and Hydro XTRM have been unveiled here at CTIA 2013 in Las Vegas. Doing what Kyocera does best, the latest two iterations in the Hydro family are mid-range devices that pack a solid feature set with the added bonus of water, shock and dustproofing. First up is the EDGE, which is only officially rated as being waterproof but still sports what feels like a solid case, destined for both Sprint and Boost Mobile. The XTRM (as the name would suggest) is officially certified as resistant to not only water, but also shocks, drops and dust and will arrive instead on U.S. Cellular.

Both devices are decidedly mid-range, with 4-inch WVGA displays, 5MP cameras and dual-core Snapdragon processors. Stick around after the break where we have a bit more information, as well as some hands-on pictures and video to get a better feel for both of these new devices.

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4 years ago

LG Optimus G Pro confirmed for May 30 launch in Asia

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Just a quick heads up that LG has confirmed that its May 30 event in Macau, China, indeed is for the Optimus G Pro, as we originally suspected, and not a successor to the smaller Optimus G. That makes more sense from a release-cycle standpoint, as the Optimus G is all of eight months old at this point.

In the United States, the Optimus G Pro is currently (and exclusively) available on AT&T.

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3 coming to the UK in July

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6.3-inch Galaxy Mega to go on sale at UK retailer in July for £459.99

If the likes of the recent 5-inch devices, or the Galaxy Note 2 just aren't quite big enough for you, then you may be interested in the Samsung Galaxy Mega. A colossal 6.3-inch smartphone, the Mega was announced back in April for launch in Europe and Russia sometime in May. We're now seeing the first signs of UK availability for this monstrous device, and it can be yours in July, though the exact date is still unknown.

Retailer Clove Technology has started taking pre-orders for the Mega, and for £459.99 you get the 16GB version in either black or white. Other notable specs on the device include Android 4.2.2 and Samsung's latest version of Touchwiz, a 1.7GHz dual-core CPU, a HD display, LTE, an 8MP rear camera, 1.5GB of RAM and a pretty sizeable 3200 mAh battery. You may also need large hands to use one. 

Get all your pre-order information at the link below, and if you're thinking of picking one of these up, do please tell us in the comments below. 

Source: Clove

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4 years ago

Budget-friendly LG Optimus F3 pictured for Sprint

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Optimus G Pro also rumored for the Now Network

LG is keen to make inroads into the budget LTE space with its Optimus F series devices, first announced at Mobile World Congress back in February. But one device that wasn't shown in Barcelona was the Optimus F3, a budget-focused 4G handset with a 4-inch WVGA display. Now it seems the F3 may be headed to Sprint, as prolific leaker @evleaks has unearthed a render of the device with Sprint branding.

At the other end of LG's product portfolio, @evleaks also mentions that the 5.5-inch Optimus G Pro, currently exclusive to AT&T, will be headed to Sprint "this quarter." A model number of LS980 is given, tying in with a device we've already seen pass by the Bluetooth SIG.

As for the Optimus F3, that's expected "in the next few weeks."

Source: PhoneArena

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S4 Active briefly caught on video

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Rugged Galaxy S4 variant crops up once again in Croatia

Following yesterday's first photo appearance, today brings us a very quick video encounter with the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active. The ruggedized S4 variant, which sports physical buttons and a 1080p HD display, was captured in Croatia by an informant for MobileTechReview. The video mentions that it's powered by a Snapdragon S4 Plus CPU, however this is contradicted by earlier screenshots, which reveal a quad-core part at up to 1.9GHz with an Adreno 320 GPU. The S4 Plus line consists of dual-core Krait parts at up to 1.7GHz, so our money is still on a Snapdragon 600 being inside this thing. An 8 megapixel rear camera is also mentioned in the video, though this has yet to be confirmed.

The video is relatively short, but we can clearly see the latest version of Samsung's TouchWiz UI, and the "Active" seems just as snappy as its mainstream sibling. The footage appears to have been captured in the same demo station setting as yesterday's still images, and the weather widget shows Zagreb, Croatia as its location.

There's little doubt now that the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active is indeed a real device. We imagine it'll only be a matter of time before it's officially announced by the Korean manufacturer. 

Source: YouTube; via: PhoneArena

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the rugged Cat B15

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The one word you think of when you see those three letters. CAT. As in Caterpillar. As in construction equipment.

Rugged.

And that's translated nicely to the Cat 15 ruggedized Android smartphone. Available now for $349 after its unveiling a couple months ago at Mobile World Congress, it's billed as a durable smartphone for the active set, whether that's on the side of the mountain or atop a rather impressive piece of construction equipment.  

In fact, we watched this sucker hit the floor hard in Las Vegas. Hard. As in up all night gambling and you can't take it anymore hard. We've got hands-on video and more after the break.

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4 years ago

US based HTC One unlocked and Developer editions getting small update

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Small update with system enhancements, still based on Android 4.1.2

HTC One phones that were sold unlocked via HTC, including the developer editions, in the U.S.A. are getting a small over-the-air update today. As you can see it's a 17MB file containing "important enhancements and bug fixes". Without seeing the actual change log, we're going to guess this is an update you'll probably want to take.

When all said and done, you're at Software Number 1.29.1540.16,  Android version 4.1.2 and HTC Sense 5.0. The usual warnings about root and custom recovery apply, so be sure to have that RUU handy, or wait for a flashable version.

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4 years ago

T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S3 LTE reportedly launching June 5

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Galaxy Exhibit also tipped for May 29 arrival

With the Samsung Galaxy S4 launch over and done with, T-Mobile USA is looking to bolster its smartphone line-up with an LTE-capable version of the Galaxy S3. T-Mobile internal screenshots obtained by TmoNews show a Jun. 5 launch date for the device. No word on pricing yet, but TmoNews speculates that the carrier will likely replace its current HSPA-only S3 with the new 4G LTE model. T-Mobile currently sells the Galaxy S3 on its instalment plans with a $69.99 down payment.

Alongside the S3 LTE, T-Mobile looks set to debut the Galaxy Exhibit, a phone we first saw leaked back in February. With a dual-core 1GHz CPU and a WVGA screen, the Exhibit looks like T-Mo's answer take on Galaxy S3 Mini. The Exhibit is listed with a May 29 launch date.

Source: TmoNews

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4 years ago

Is this the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active?

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New pics purport to show water-resistant, ruggedized device with S4 specs

The Samsung Galaxy S4 Active has long been rumored, with publications including the Wall Street Journal reporting that Samsung will release a ruggedized, water and dust-resistant version of its flagship phone this summer. Today GSMArena has obtained pics of a device that would certainly seem to fit that bill. The shots seem to show a large-screened device with a sturdy red back and physical menu, back and keys on the front.

A further image confirms the GT-i9295 model number previously associated with the Galaxy S4 Active, along with the presence of a 1.9GHz Snapdragon 600 CPU. GSMArena reports that the screen is a 5-inch 1080p SuperAMOLED unit, just like the vanilla GS4. The shot of the back also reveals a remarkably thin handset, in contrast to most water-resistant phones, which are smaller and chunkier. So it looks like Samsung hasn't skimped on hardware specs in creating this ruggedized beast.

The Galaxy S4 Active might be just one of several Galaxy S4 models to make its way onto the market in the coming months. The Galaxy S4 Mini has been extensively leaked, and recent leaks also point to a larger "S4 Mega" variant.

Would you be in the market for a reinforced, waterproof phone with these kinds of specs? Hit the comments and let us know.

Source: GSMArena

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4 years ago

Sony Xperia UL announced for Japan, 5-inches and 1080p display

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Sony's latest only headed for Japan at present, but packs some good looking specs

Yet another Sony smartphone has been formally announced, but like the Xperia A before it, this one too is destined only for Japan at the moment. Previously rumored, it's called the Xperia UL, and appears to be cut from a similar mould to the Xperia Z. 

Spec wise, we're looking at another 5-inch, 1080p display. Underneath, propelling everything along is a 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM and a 2300mAh battery. On-board storage is 16GB, and cameras come in at 13MP on the back and 3.1MP on the front. And, in true Sony fashion the Xperia UL is waterproof and dustproof. 

The Xperia UL retains some of the same design features as the Xperia Z too. That same on/off button on the side, but the glass back is gone. It appears to be available in three different colors -- black, white and pink -- and is said to be heading to both KDDI and NTT Docomo in the coming weeks. 

Source: Sony via Phonearena

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4 years ago

Galaxy S4 Mega, S4 Active and S4 Mini hinted in app update text

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New Samsung handsets outed in changelog for WatchON TV application

Rumors have been circulating for a few weeks that Samsung is working on a "Galaxy S4 Mini," as well as a ruggedized version of its current flagship device. Today an app changelog entry for the Galaxy S4's pre-loaded TV app could indicate that both are on the way, along with another device known as the "S4 Mega."

The shot above, sent our way by tipster Paul, shows that the recent 5.0.4 update for Samsung WatchON adds "support for [the] upcoming S4 Mega, S4 mini and S4 Active." The changelog has since been updated to remove the reference, suggesting that someone let the cat out of the bag a little early. The S4 Mini name has been rumored for some time, and the device is refers to extensively leaked. The S4 Active name would seem to refer to the rumored "waterproof" S4 variant. But the S4 Mega is a bit more of a mystery -- could the existing Galaxy Mega have been renamed? Or might this be a different large-screened S4 variant -- or simply a typo?

Whatever the case, the fact that WatchON has been updated with support for all three devices suggests that they'll likely include the S4's TV-controlling capabilities.

We'll have to wait and see if and when the Galaxy S4 Active, Mini and Mega emerge. Whatever form these handsets take, Samsung looks set to fully capitalize on the halo effect of its high-profile Galaxy S4 launch.

Thanks to Paul for tipping us the image above through the new Android Central app!

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4 years ago

Japan's KDDI gets HTC J One with microSD slot

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HTC flagship comes to Japan with oft-requested removable storage

HTC and Japanese carrier KDDI have announced the HTC J One -- a new variant of the HTC One designed fro the Japanese market. The J One packs much the same internal hardware as its international cousin, but with the addition of a microSD slot, allowing storage to be expanded by up to 64 gigabytes.

The HTC J One also supports FeliCa NFC-based wireless payments and 1Seg digital terrestrial TV broadcasts. (There's a new opaque area below the camera lens which may be part of the internal hardware for one of these two features.)

HTC's also debuting some new accessories alongside the J One. There's a hard shell cover with kickstand, and the HTC J One Mini -- a version of the HTC Mini handset already released in China, or a "phone for your phone," if you prefer.

This isn't the first localized HTC One we've seen with removable storage. Last month a Chinese variant of the phone appeared with a removable back cover, microSD support and dual-SIM capabilities. It isn't clear whether the J One will incorporate a similar removable back, but as HTC's already manufacturing this kind of device for China, we'd bet that's probably what's going on here.

The HTC J One is due to go on sale in Japan from early June.

Source: KDDI via Engadget, YouTube, HTC

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S3 Android 4.2.2 firmware leaked with Galaxy S4 features

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Lock screen widgets, re-vamped settings, driving mode and more

Samsung has a track record of bringing key software features to older phones with major firmware upgrades, and it seems last year's Galaxy S3 is about to see such an update along with Android 4.2.2. Leaked firmware obtained by SamMobile brings the international Galaxy S3 -- the quad-core Exynos-powered GT-i9300 -- up to Android 4.2.2, and adds many features previously reserved for the Galaxy S4.

New features include a familiar array of lock screen widgets and unlock effects, new display modes, a re-tooled quick settings area in the notification pull-down, a new driving mode and an updated version of the S Voice assistant app. Some of the headline Galaxy S4 features like "Air view" hover-touch abilities aren't included -- that's because they're dependent on the S4's internal hardware.

SamMobile has published the new -- and very much pre-release -- firmware version I9300XXUFME3 online, and it comes with all the usual warnings associated with using unfinished software on your phone. In addition, it'll increase your binary counter (the difficult-to-reset counter telling you how many unofficial ROMs you've installed) by one, even though it's marked as an official Samsung firmware.

If you want to live dangerously, you can find the download and installation details over at the source link. If not, you'll find video after the break.

Source: SamMobile

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4 years ago

Vodafone Smart III is new own-branded budget offering

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£95 up-front gets you Jelly Bean on a 4-inch screen

If you were wondering just how much smartphone you can get for under £100, Vodafone UK has your answer. The Vodafone Smart III is the latest entrant in the operator's Smart line, coming with mostly vanilla Android 4.1 Jelly Bean (despite the distinctly ICS-looking search bar) on a 4-inch WVGA screen. It's powered by an unnamed 1GHz processor with 512MB of RAM, and packs 5-megapixel rear camera, so there's nothing too fancy going on under the hood. But it's an attractive enough design, and we always like to see more vanilla Android out there.

The Vodafone Smart III sells for £95 outright on PAYG, and is given away for free on contracts starting at £13 per month. The device is on sale now in black and white color options.

Source: Vodafone

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4 years ago

Galaxy S4-compatible Samsung TecTiles 2 NFC tags now on sale

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Available today from Samsung, $15 for pack of five tags

Samsung has announced the availability of its second-generation TecTiles tags, tiny writable NFC stickers that can be used to trigger various actions on a smartphone. For example, used with the TecTiles app, they can be programmed to check in on social networks, or toggle various settings on the device when it's within range.

TecTiles 2 are compatible with all NFC-enabled Samsung phones, and the company says they may work on other Android-based phones with NFC too, though it's making no promises. Unlike first-gen TecTiles, TecTiles 2 are fully compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S4. (Go figure.)

The tags are available today from Samsung's online store, priced at $15 for a pack of five, and they'll be starting to appear in brick-and-mortar stores from June. Hit the Google Play link above to grab the TecTiles app, or the source link below to buy the tags themselves.

More: Samsung TecTiles

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