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5 years ago

Grab a 32GB Acer Iconia A500 for just $299 at Woot

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I'm a sucker for daily deals sites, and had to pass this one along.  A 32GB Acer Iconia A500 (one of our top picks of last year) for just under $300 bucks is nothing to sneeze at.  We know the next generations of tablets and quad-core is coming soon, but the A500 is still a hell of a tablet and this is a hell of a price.  If you're in the market for a new tablet, or just want to window-shop, head over to Woot and have a look-see.

Source: Woot!

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5 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 16GB now on sale at Futureshop for only $400

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If you live near a Futureshop and have yet to pick up an Android tablet yet for whatever reason -- this might be your weekend to set aside the time to do so. Right now -- Futureshop has the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 WiFi version coming with 16GB of storage on sale for only $400 until February 10th. That's $100 off the original price for Futureshop and one heck of a deal on a great tablet. Need to know more about the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1? You can check out our full review or hit up the Futureshop link below.

Source: Futureshop

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5 years ago

AT&T's Samsung Galaxy Note passes through FCC

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The Samsung Galaxy Note that we already know is coming to AT&T, has passed through the FCC.  There's absolutely no surprises -- we see the 21Mbps UMTS/HSPA+, GSM 850/1900, and band 4 and 17 LTE radios, along with NFC, Wifi and Bluetooth.  Now all we need to know is when the SGH-i717 will go up for sale -- all we've officially heard is "the coming weeks".  Even though it's not a surprise, we're still pumped to see this one stateside.

Source: FCC

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5 years ago

Acer Iconia A200 video hands-on

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So a few quick thoughts on the Acer Iconia A200, now that's it's available in stores: Yeah, it's yet another dual-core 10.1-inch Android tablet. Yeah, there's a little more software lag than we'd like to see. Yeah, we've got wait for it to get Ice Cream Sandwich. Yeah, it's not the thinnest tablet you've ever picked up. Been there, done that, right?

But absolutely do not write off the A200. For $350 for the 16GB model, you could do worse. Now, that statement might well change in the next 6 months, as ASUS has a 7-inch quad-core tablet on the way for $250. (Insanity!) But for today. we're pretty impressed with the A200 after just a few minutes of use. 

Most of what you see is pretty familiar. Honeycomb is Honeycomb. But Acer's tossed in some interesting software improvements, including a lockscreen with quick-launch shortcuts, and a neat little "Ring" launcher that lives on top of the home screens, but only when you call for it to. It's an interesting differentiator, and it's nice to see a little work put into an otherwise interim version of Android.

Hit the break for our quick hands-on. And stick around for the end of the video for a little surprise.

More: Acer A200 specs; Acer A200 forums

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5 years ago

Acer Iconia A200 now available at Best Buy for $349

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Update: Watch our video hands-on!

As if deciding on an Android tablet wasn't hard enough now yet another one is available to make things harder. The Acer Iconia A200 is now available from Best Buy, both online and in stores, for $349. The A200 is a Honeycomb-based tablet, but all signs point to a mid-Febuary ICS update -- and there's a giant sticker on the box saying that an upgrade is coming. So, will this be your next tablet? Be sure to stay tuned as we review this bad boy!

Source: Best Buy; thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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5 years ago

White Samsung Galaxy Note launches in the UK Jan. 23, at John Lewis Oxford Street

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Samsung has announced that the white version of its phone/tablet hybrid device, the Galaxy Note, will be launching in the UK from next Monday, Jan. 23. The catch is that for a limited time it'll only be available at the John Lewis store on Oxford Street, London, as part of an exclusivity deal between Samsung and the upmarket retailer.

Samsung's already seen considerable interest in the Note, which combines a 5.3-inch HD SuperAMOLED screen with stylus input and a 1.4GHz Exynos CPU. It announced in late December that it'd shipped one million units since the device's November launch.

If you're not in London, Samsung says that "additional channels" will begin offering the white Galaxy Note in February. However, if you do pick up your white Note at John Lewis, you'll be rewarded with £250 worth of "free music, films and e-books", presumably meaning some sort of voucher.

We've got the full press release after the break. For more on the Note, check out our full review.

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5 years ago

BlueStacks app player out of alpha, beta-bound "soon"

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BlueStacks, that nifty little Android app player bound for PCs everywhere, is out of its alpha stage and heading into beta "soon." BlueStacks will sync the apps on your smartphone or tablet and store them in its own cloud, where they will then be accessbile on your Windows Vista or 7-powered PC. BlueStacks is free and works so well that it earned itself CNET's coveted "Best of CES" title at this year's show. Hit the source link to sign up for the beta and be sure to sing out when you become one of the lucky chosen ones. 

Source: BlueStacks

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5 years ago

LightSquared claims government testing 'rigged' by GPS industry insiders

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This is getting interesting.  After the recent news that federal testing determined LightSquared's LTE network plans would never work without interfering with GPS (and a cease to any further testing) LightSquared has come back with guns blazing.  In a statement, the company has accused the GPS industry of rigging the results by using antiquated equipment, shrouding the entire process in secrecy, and using unrealistic parameters for failure.  Jeff Carlisle, LightSquared’s Executive Vice President of regulatory affairs and public policy, Geoff Stearn, LightSquared’s Vice President for spectrum development, and Edmond Thomas, former chief engineer at the FCC held a press conference and had the following to say:

Testing was shrouded in secrecy, no transparency. The GPS manufacturers cherry-picked the devices in secret without any independent oversight authority in place or input from LightSquared. The GPS manufacturers and the government end users put non-disclosure agreements in place for the PNT EXCOM’s tests, preventing any input by an independent authority or from LightSquared before the tests began. This secrecy made it impossible for independent experts to properly oversee or challenge the process and results, thereby leaving taxpayers who paid for the testing no option but to take the PNT EXCOM’s word for it.
The testing protocol deliberately focused on obsolete and niche market devices that were least able to withstand potential interference. When LightSquared finally obtained a list of the devices tested, after all testing in this first phase of tests had been completed, it was able to determine that the testing included many discontinued or niche market devices with poor filters or no filters. The units tested represent less than one percent of the contemporary universe of GPS devices. In fact, the only mass market device alleged to “fail” during this round of testing performed flawlessly during the Technical Working Group testing, which used best practice protocols agreed to by all parties, thus raising doubts about the integrity of PNT EXCOM’s process.
The testing standard does not reflect reality. To guarantee favorable results, the PNT EXCOM selected an extremely conservative definition of failure – one dB of interference. Independent experts agree that a one dB threshold can only be detected in laboratory settings and has no impact on GPS positional accuracy or user experience. In fact, GPS devices are designed with the ability to withstand eight dB or more of loss of sensitivity due to man-caused and natural interference. By setting the definition of interference at one dB, the testing was rigged to ensure that most receivers would fail. It should be noted that PNT EXCOM and others have justified the one dB threshold by citing an International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standard. However, that standard explicitly states that it does not apply to general purpose GPS receivers.

They go on to say other great quotables like asking reporters to enquire if it's "fair that taxpayers funded a testing regime they cannot review?" and speaking of violating "conflict of interest" laws.  They are serious, and should be.  Earlier this month, LightSquared was given just 30 days to get regulatory approval by Sprint, who is a heavy investor and has (had?) plans to use LightSquared's service for their nationwide LTE roll-out.  Losing funding from Sprint would be a major financial blow to LightSquared.  We're pretty certain Sprint will still be able to roll out their LTE network as planned, but they see an advantage in using LightSquared and would like to see everything resolved as well.

Were the testing procedures rigged? Will LightSquared get another shot with different testing procedures? Will Sprint continue to invest in the company?  Join us next week for another episode of the Guiding LightSquared.  See the press release after the break.

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5 years ago

Amazon Kindle Fire Version 6.2.2 update brings manual e-mail setup fixes, full-screen browsing

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Amazon is pushing out Software Version 6.2.2 for the Kindle Fire over the air, and it's also available for manual installation. Here's what's new:

  • Enhances fluidity and performance.
  • Improves support for manually setting up e-mail providers in the e-mail app
  • Adds full-screen browsing 

The upate is currently pushing out over the air. But if you just can't wait, you can also install it manually. Here's how:

  1. Make sure you have at least 40 percent battery charge.
  2. Download the update-kindle-6.2.2_D01E_3205220 file from Amazon here.
  3. Plug in your Kindle Fire and open a file explorer. Move the update-kindle-6.2.2_D01E_3205220 file to the kindleupdates folder.
  4. Disconnect your Kindle Fire.
  5. Go to the quick settings at the top of the screen. Choose More>Update your Kindle.
  6. Sit back and relax. It'll restart a couple times.

And that's it!

Source: Amazon; More: Kindle Fire Forums

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5 years ago

Motorola Xoom UK price slashed again, now £249.99

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If you've been following recent Motorola Xoom developments, you'll know that the first "Google Experience" tablet has just been updated to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Alongside the update, Carphone Warehouse, one of the main sellers of Xooms in the UK, has cut the price of the Wifi-only model to £249.99. This is a £50 drop from the earlier RRP of £299.99, and the latest in a long line of Xoom price drops which has seen the tablet gradually fall from the July price of £399.

It might not be as sleek as the Galaxy Tab 10.1, or as fast as the ASUS Transformer Prime, but £250 for a 10-inch, dual-core ICS tablet isn't a bad deal at all if you ask us. UK readers, would you be tempted to drop £250 on a Xoom at this point? Be sure to let us know in the comments.

Source: Carphone Warehouse; via: Eurodroid

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5 years ago

ASUS Transformer Prime OTA rolling out, brings new GPS software version

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The ASUS Transformer Prime is getting another OTA this evening, and reports say that the GPS is working much better.  If you recall, there has been issues surrounding the aluminum casing and GPS signal with the Prime, and ASUS was said to be investigating.  We've confirmed that there's a new build version number (IML74K.US_epad-9.4.2.11-20120117) as well as an update to the GPS software bringing it to version 6.9.13, but there's no official changelog just yet.  If you're rocking a Prime and haven't rooted it, now would be a good time to check for an update from the About Tablet screen.

Thanks, MexDroid!

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5 years ago

AT&T bringing new data plans for phones and tablets on Jan 22

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AT&T has announced some changes to their data plan pricing.  Starting January 22, new plans that offer more data, albeit at a slightly higher cost, go into effect for both smartphones and tablets.  The new plans are as follows:

Smartphone plans

  • AT&T Data Plus 300MB: $20 for 300MB
  • AT&T Data Pro 3GB: $30 for 3GB
  • AT&T Data Pro 5GB: $50 for 5GB, with mobile hotspot / tethering

Tablet plans

  • AT&T DataConnect 3GB: $30 for 3GB
  • AT&T DataConnect 5GB: $50 for 5GB

Smartphone customers needing additional data can pay $10 per additional gigabyte on the AT&T Data Pro 3GB and Data Pro 5GB plans; AT&T Data Plus users will receive an extra 300MB for $20.

Currently, customers pay $5 less per plan for 200MB, 2GB, and 4GB plus tethering.  Users will have the option to keep any existing plan, or to change to the new rates when they become available.  For more info, the press release is after the break. 

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5 years ago

The complete Motorola Xoom Wifi Ice Cream Sandwich changelog

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As we first told you late last night, the Wifi-only version of the Motorola Xoom is in the midst of getting its Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update. Motorola's just released the full changelog, which reads as follows:

  • Updated Browser with faster rendering, zoom and pan: Users can also now save pages for offline reading and request desktop versions of websites.
  • Swipe to dismiss notifications, tasks, and browser tabs: You can now dismiss individual notifications, apps from the Recent Apps list, and browser tabs with a simple swipe of a finger.
  • Redesigned app launcher: In All Apps launcher, you can now simply drag an app to get information about it, immediately uninstall it, or disable a pre-installed app.
  • New System Font for Improved Readability: An entirely new typeface (called Roboto) optimized for high resolution screens improves readability and brings a polished feel to the user interface.
  • Updated “People” Application: Replaces contacts and integrates seamlessly with Google+ and other social networks.
  • Improved text input and spell-checking: The keyboard now features improved accuracy to make text input faster. It also now includes an in-line spell checker to make corrections easier.
  • Type with your voice: Now you can simply touch the microphone on the keyboard and start talking to write emails, SMS, or any other text—more than 20 languages supported. Text appears in real time, so there’s no waiting for server processing.
  • Richer and versatile imaging capabilities: For capturing larger scenes, the camera introduces a single motion panorama mode.  Also, you can now take still shots while shooting video just by tapping the screen as video continues to record. You can also launch camera directly from the Lockscreen. When you shoot videos, you can now choose from a number of silly faces and other fun effects which recognize individual facial features so you can give your friends big eyes, squeeze heads, make noses bigger, or change the scenery with background replacement.
  • Redesigned Gallery app with photo editor: To help pictures look their best, the Gallery now offers a powerful photo editor so you can crop and rotate pictures, set levels, remove red eyes, add effects, and much more.Richer, resizable widgets   You can expand widgets to show more content, or shrink them to save space.

Quite the update indeed. So how's the update going for everybody so far?

Source: Motorola; More in the Xoom forums

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5 years ago

Ice Cream Sandwich Google Apps tip: long press any icon for its name

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Here's a little tip you may not have known about -- while working inside Google's applications in Ice Cream Sandwich, you can long press any icon and its name will appear.  This can be handy for figuring out what all those fancy new icons mean, and is a heck of a lot better than Jerry's method of "just press it and see what happens".  For now, this seems limited to Google's apps, but it certainly seems like something that can be done for any application.  Let's see more of this sort of thing, Google! When things are easy to learn, we all love them just a little more.

Source: +Android

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5 years ago

Ice Cream Sandwich for the Motorola Xoom appears to be rolling out now to everyone

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A treat for the night owls from Motorola -- the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Wifi only Motorola Xoom looks to be rolling out right about now.  Reports say it's Android 4.0.3, and everything is the same as the recent "project" that started last week.  It's an OTA, and like all OTA's will roll out in stages of some sort or another and nobody is sure how it's calculated.  Keep an eye on the forums if you're looking for the manual download link should you be the impatient type.  

More in the Motorola Xoom forums

Thanks everyone who sent this in!

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