Headlines

4 years ago

Verizon Galaxy S4 updated with Optical Reader, bug fixes

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150MB update for Verizon's GS4 now rolling out

Verizon's Samsung Galaxy S4 has a new update pushing out for it right now, bringing a couple of new features, tweaks and bug fixes. The 150MB update to software version VRUDMI1 is rolling out over the air and through Samsung's Kies software, though as always it may take a little time before it filters through to everyone.

The main new addition for Verizon GS4 owners is Samsung's Optical Reader app, which can create contacts from business cards using the rear camera and optical character recognition, in addition to translating printed text between languages. Other major changes and tweaks include improved Wifi connectivity, S Memo bug fixes, support for three-way calling when roaming on the Bluegrass network, and roaming support for TELUS in Canada.

If you're upgrading your Verizon Galaxy S4 to the new firmware today, hit the comments and tell us how you're getting on.

Source: Verizon (PDF), via: Android Central forums

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4 years ago

No plans to bring HTC One Max to Canada

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'The current HTC line up of devices is sufficient for the Canadian marketplace'

U.S. carriers Sprint and Verizon might be getting their hands on the HTC One Max later in the year, but there's no such luck for anyone looking to pick up the gianormous HTC handset north of the border. A statement from the company's Canadian arm confirmed to MobileSyrup that there are no plans to launch the 5.9-incher in Canada —

“HTC devices differ from country to country, we work closely with carrier partners in each region to determine what is best for their consumers. Every market is different and has specific needs and demands. We consider a number of factors such as, the HTC devices currently available, the competition etc. At this time the current HTC line up of devices is sufficient for the Canadian marketplace.”

On the other hand we weren't exactly blown away by the One Max during our time with the device, so with the more compelling HTC One already widely available in Canada, perhaps Canadians aren't at such a disadvantage.

More: HTC One Max review

Source: MobileSyrup

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom leaked for AT&T

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Samsung's hybrid camera and phone device shown with carrier branding and 2013 release date

Samsung's Galaxy S4 Zoom looks to be making it's way to AT&T sometime this year, if @evleaks is correct. The device is best described as a hybrid of a "decent" phone and a "decent" camera, and is certainly a niche device. That's not a bad thing by any means, as other niche devices have seen great sales and plenty of success.

Alex had a look at the Galaxy S4 Zoom last month, and while he wasn't left blown away, the phone was fluid across the board, and he found the auto mode on the camera did a good job capturing photos in most conditions. While you'll surely find better phones and better cameras, this could make for a really interesting device for some folks.

We'll keep out eyes peeled, and as more develops we'll fill you in. Seeing this come to AT&T makes a lot of sense, and we expect this rumor will pan out.

Source: @evleaks

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4 years ago

T-Mobile announces the Samsung Galaxy Light

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Alcatel OneTouch Evolve also launches today

T-Mobile US has announced plans to launch the Samsung Galaxy Light, a new entry-level 4G LTE handset. Looking like a cross between a Galaxy S3 Mini and Galaxy S4 Mini, the Galaxy Light packs a 4-inch WVGA display, a quad-core 1.4GHz processor and 1GB of RAM, and runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. There's 8GB of internal storage, expandable via microSD card, and the phone ships with a 1800mAh battery and a 5-megapixel camera.

So nothing much to write home about, but T-Mo should be targeting a low price point for the device when it launches at some undisclosed point in the future.

Meanwhile today sees the launch of Alcatel's affordable OneTouch Evolve on T-Mobile — yours for $28 down, with 24 monthly payments of $3.

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4 years ago

How to turn off BlinkFeed in Sense 5.5

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The option to turn off BlinkFeed is good to have — but you'll be missing out on a great feature

One of the more radical changes HTC brought in its Sense 5 user interface was the addition of BlinkFeed, a somewhat customizable news reader built into your home screens. In fact, it was meant to serve as your home screen, showing you the latest from your favorite news sources, Facebook and Twitter. 

And as you'd expect, BlinkFeed was polarizing. New features can be hard to sell, especially when it comes to forcing them onto a home screen — and doubly so when there's no way to turn them off. Sure, you could just install a new launcher — or just ignore BlinkFeed in the first place — but that wasn't really the point for many.

But starting in Sense 5.5, which debuts on the new HTC One Max, you'll be able to easily turn off the BlinkFeed pane.

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4 years ago

Feedly updated with speed improvements, new widget

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Feedly 17 also includes new 'discover' section, Galaxy Gear support

RSS reader Feedly emerged as one of the major players in the news-reading world following the demise of Google Reader earlier in the year. And now the Feedly app for Android has undergone a major overhaul, bringing improved performance across the board, as well as new features and an updated home screen widget.

Feedly says the new version of the app boasts 300% faster start times, as well as a new, more fluid scrolling experience. There've also been some visual changes, with fonts being re-tooled for easier readability. And a long-standing gripe — the auto-refresh feature when switching back to the app — has been addressed too. What's more, there's a new "discover" section within the app, populated with some of the day's most popular stories.

Other changes include new Facebook SDK integration and support for Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch. (A reference to Android 4.4 KitKat support being added was quickly scrubbed from the changelog — make of that what you will.)

In any case, Feedly users can grab the latest version of the app from Google Play right now. Hit the link up above to get downloading.

Source: Feedly Blog

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4 years ago

Verizon Moto X soak test invites are happening

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Big Red's Moto X may be preparing for the big camera update

Verizon looks to be joining the Moto X update party, if today's soak test invites mean what everyone thinks they mean. T-Mobile, Sprint and AT&T have updated their Moto X devices to a newer build that fixes a few bugs, enhances a few things, and most importantly makes the camera about a million times better and we've all been waiting to hear when it would hit Verizon.

With soak tests starting shortly, it shouldn't be too long — provided the testing goes well. Of course, there's always a chance that this is a different update, that may be better or more minor (we hate to call any update "worse") than what the other carriers have, but we seriously doubt it.

If you're a member of the Moto feedback network and are using a Verizon Moto X, be on the look out for an invitation of your own. If you're not a member, but have always wanted to be, click here to get the party started and join.

Thanks, anonymous folks who sent this in!

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4 years ago

Yes, you can unlock an HTC One Max with your nipple

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You know, if using other body parts on a fingerprint scanner is your thing. And, no, we're not going to show you.

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4 years ago

Sony pushes out maintenance updates for Xperia Z1, Z Ultra

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Camera improvements for the Z1, touchscreen tweaks for the Ultra

Sony has announced that it's started pushing out maintenance updates for two of its newest high-end phones, the 5-inch Xperia Z1 and the 6.4-inch Xperia Z Ultra — and there are some noteworthy fixes for both devices. 

First up, the Xperia Z1 gets camera tweaks — new camera algorithms for "better all round performance." There have also been changes to Sony's smart camera platform, the manufacturer says, allowing built-in mini-apps like sweep panorama and the various AR capabilities to run more smoothly.

Meanwhile, the Xperia Z Ultra gets "optimized touchscreen sensitivity" for fingers, pens and styluses. And both the Z1 and the Ultra will receive battery life enhancements, display recalibration tweaks and faster email sync over MS Exchange. Both new sets of firmware are still based on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, so we're not dealing with a major update here. Nevertheless, it looks like there's some good stuff for Xperia Z1 and Ultra owners to get stuck into.

Source: Sony Mobile Blog

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4 years ago

O2 and HTC partner to give away 18ct gold HTC One

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O2 HTC One customers who buy between Oct. 17 and 20 will be eligible to win

Remember that 18 carat gold-plated HTC One produced to celebrate the 18th MOBO awards — of which there are just five in existence? Well, HTC UK has partnered with British carrier O2 to give the £2,750-value handset away to one lucky customer. In a post on its official promotional site, HTC reveals that the blinged-out smartphone will be given away to one lucky customer who buys the HTC One from O2 between Oct. 17 and Oct. 20. One of the remaining four will be given away to the winner of the MOBO for best newcomer on Oct. 19.

As we saw during our time with the gold HTC One at a recent event in London, this is a really, really gold HTC One. But we suppose at least the winner will have their other HTC One for situations that demand a less lustrous smartphone.

More: Hands-on with the real gold HTC One

Source: HTC

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4 years ago

HTC One Max and HTC Sense 5.5 video walkthrough

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The HTC One Max is upon us, with a UK arrival imminent, and Sprint and Verizon launches scheduled for the holidays. We've also published our full review of the Max, with the detailed rundown of what's going on with HTC's 5.9-inch monster phone. Today we're bringing you a video walkthrough of the HTC One Max, showing the phone's hardware in detail, as well as the new software tricks in HTC Sense 5.5. Check it out above, then hit up the rest of our One Max coverage, linked below.

More: HTC One Max review; One Max specs; One Max availability

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4 years ago

Verizon's HTC One Max seems to be missing something

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No Verizon logo on its HTC One Max? Could this be? We wouldn't put any money on it. Especially because — and we'll spoil this here and show you again after the break — what Verizon's got on its website is different than what HTC's showing us.

Anyhoo. It's coming to Verizon — we just don't know when or for how much. (Read whatever you want into that Nov. 1 date on the home screen there.)

More: Verizon; HTC One Max forums

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4 years ago

Sony announces U.S. availability of Xperia Z1 and Z Ultra

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Smartwatch 2 also seeing a Stateside launch alongside Sony's latest high-end handsets

Literally days after Sony CEO Kaz Hirai seemingly poured water on a Sony breakout in the U.S, today we're treated to the news of three new device launches. The Xperia Z1, Xperia Z Ultra and the Smartwatch 2 will all be available to purchase in the United States. 

The Xperia Z Ultra is available from today at Sony's online store at $649.99 for the HSPA+ version and $679.99 for LTE. For that you're getting a monstrous 6.4-inch 1080p Triluminos display, a 2.2GHz Snapdragon 800, 2GB of RAM, an 8MP rear camera and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. Internal storage is a slim 16GB, expandable via microSD card, and it will be available in black, white and purple. 

The Xperia Z1 is available in HSPA+ form only at a price of $669.99. Arguably Sony's finest Android handset to date, one of the marquee features of the recently launched Z1 is that 20.7MP Sony G-Lens camera on the rear. Round the front you're looking at a 5-inch 1080p Triluminos display, with a 2.2GHz Snapdragon 800 and 2GB of RAM underneath with 16GB of on-board, and expandable storage. It's also waterproof, if that's important to you. Both the Z1 and the Z Ultra are available now from Sony's U.S. online store, select Sony brick-and-mortar stores and selected online retailers. 

The Sony Smartwatch 2 is the follow up to the original Smartwatch, and can be paired with Android devices running Ice Cream Sandwich and above. It promises 3-4 days battery life, easy setup via NFC and an 'Android like' user interface. Our early hands-ons with the Smartwatch 2 find it lacking a little when compared to something like the Samsung Galaxy Gear, but it also costs much less. The Smartwatch 2 can be had via the same channels as the two phones, and can be yours for $199.95. 

You'll find links to the Sony Store at the source below, and be sure to check out our extensive review and hands on coverage with the Xperia Z1 and Z Ultra. 

More: Sony Xperia Z1 review | Sony Xperia Z Ultra hands-on

 

Source: Sony

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4 years ago

Argos launches £99 Android tablet

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'MyTablet' will arrive in stores tomorrow

Following Tesco's Hudl launch a few weeks back, another major British retail name has announced its own-brand, low-cost Android tablet. The Argos "MyTablet" will arrive in stores from tomorrow, Oct. 16, priced at just £99.99. While it undercuts the Tesco Hudl on price, it also doesn't quite match up to it in terms of specs. There's a 7-inch, 1024x600-resolution display, a dual-core 1.6GHz processor with 8GB of storage and microSD support. And you also get front and rear cameras — 2MP and 0.3MP shooters respectively.

On the software side, the device runs a near-stock Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean-based OS, with BBC iPlayer, Angry Birds and e-reader software pre-loaded.

via BBC News

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4 years ago

HTC One Max review

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Does the world n​​eed a 5.9-inch HTC One?

We like the HTC One. Twice this year we’ve said it was the best Android phone you can buy, and there’s a strong argument for saying that’s still the case today. When it arrived back in March, the HTC One bucked some of the major high-end smartphone trends of the time. A metal shell, not plastic. A quirky two-button setup. A 4-megapixel camera that focused on pixel size, not megapixel count. And a screen no larger than its predecessor, at 4.7-inches, in a world of rapidly ballooning display sizes.

Nevertheless, big phones are, and look set to remain, a thing. The success of the Samsung Galaxy Note series has inspired competitors to have a crack at their own unashamedly large smartphones. This year we’ve seen the Optimus G Pro from LG, the Xperia Z Ultra from Sony and even the Ascend Mate from Huawei. It was only a matter of time before HTC arrived — fashionably late, of course — at the oversized smartphone party.

It’s easy to look at the One Max and assume you’re just dealing with a bigger HTC One. That’s not untrue, but there’s more going on than a mere expansion of an existing phone into a new form factor — and that’s both good and bad. The Max delivers some subtle differences in design and build, a fingerprint sensor around the back, expandable storage and an array of new software tricks thanks to HTC’s new Sense 5.5.

But does the world need a 5.9-inch HTC One? And what of the competition from the likes of Samsung, which has just launched its Galaxy Note 3 amid much fanfare. Let’s find out after the break, as we take an in-depth look at the new HTC One Max.

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