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3 years ago

Samsung replaces head of mobile design (updated)

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Reuters is reporting that Samsung's head of mobile design, Chang Dong-hoon, has resigned following criticism over the design of the Galaxy S5. The phone's textured plastic back, though an improvement on earlier Samsung designs, failed to impress some critics. Lee Min-hyouk, vice president for mobile design, will take over the role; Reuters reports that Chang will continue to head up the company's design center, which oversees its broader design strategy.

Update: Samsung has confirmed that Chang Dong-hoon has not resigned, but moved to a new role within the company. His new position tasks the executive with heading up the Design Strategy Team. Statement after break.

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3 years ago

Sony closing its Reader Store in more regions this June, opening access to Kobo

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After shuttering its Reader Store in the US and Canada earlier this year, Sony has confirmed that it will be discontinuing the service in four other countries: UK, Germany, Austria and Australia. However, customers using the Sony Reader and select Xperia devices will be able to access Kobo's e-book store once the Sony Reader Store shuts down on June 16.

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3 years ago

LG launches the new Isai FL in Japan, showcasing its QuadHD display tech

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Japanese mobile operator KDDI has partnered with LG to launch a new Android smartphone, the Isai FL. This mobile device is special due to the 5.5-inch display being of 2K (QuadHD) quality with a resolution of 2560 x 1440, what we're expecting to see in the LG G3 when it eventually launches this year. If you're eagerly awaiting the G3, this could be a small insight to tease you further.

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3 years ago

Remain in the loop with Yahoo News Digest for Android

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Yahoo's News Digest app is now available for Android devices running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and above. The app debuted during the Consumer Electronics Show on iOS, and was available only in the U.S. With the rollout of the Android app, Yahoo has stated that both the iOS and Android versions will be available globally.

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3 years ago

Sony launches the Xperia Z2 in India

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Sony has already made the Xperia Z2 available across major retailers in the UK and announced plans to launch the device on its online store in the US soon. Today, the manufacturer has officially launched the device in India, stating that the handset will be available in stores starting May 15.

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3 years ago

HTC 'B2' could be next Butterfly handset for Asian markets

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HTC may be preparing another "Butterfly" handset for Asian markets, if Twitter leaks from a usually reliable source are to be believed. @LlabTooFeR writes that a device codenamed "B2" will be the next phone in the Butterfly series, sporting similar hardware specs to the company's flagship One M8. Like previous Butterfly devices, it's said to have a glossy (likely plastic) chassis, and should be aimed primarily at Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

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3 years ago

LG unveils new QHD panel, gives a peek at G3 tech

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QHD display

LG has sent out a press release detailing their upcoming QHD (that's 2K, or 2560 x 1440 pixels) display panel. The panel has received certification by NEMKO, a Norwegian testing and certification organization for electrical products. Now that the certification, which says the panel meets the 100 percent RGB color reproduction standard, is complete LG can begin mass-producing the displays. Just in time for the G3, which is all but confirmed to use a QHD panel.

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3 years ago

Moto X+1 pops up on Motorola's site again

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The Moto X+1 hasn't exactly been the shiest smartphone around. The first time we picked up on the Moto X+1 was in early April when the branding leaked online. Later some rumors suggested we'd be seeing leather and wood backplates as option for the upcoming handset, among many others. And finally, the Moto X+1 now appeared on Motorola's own website before quickly being removed. Time for a little bit of déjà vu as the Moto X+1 is back Motorola's site.

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3 years ago

Samsung to offer Swarovski crystal accessories for Galaxy S5 and Gear Fit

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In a trend to up the ante on personalization and marry fashion with wearables, Samsung has announced that it is launching a new Swarovski for Samsung series. Partnering with the famed crystal brand, Samsung is essentially bejeweling the rear perforated faux leather back battery cover of the Galaxy S5 with Swarovski crystals. Additionally, with the Gear Fit wearable exercise band, Samsung is adding clips that you can attach to the strap, essentially giving wearers their choice of bejeweled charm.

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3 years ago

Tech giants blast FCC's net neutrality proposal

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In an open letter to the Federal Communications Commission, major Internet and technology companies are united in their fight to keep the Internet free and open. Companies that include Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Netflix among others, are standing together to fight the FCC's plans to split the Internet into faster and slower speed lanes as part of a new upcoming vote.

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3 years ago

Would you implant an NFC chip into your hand?

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Game developer Zoe Quinn recently implanted an NFC chip in the space between her thumb and index finger. Appropriately enough, she's since programmed the chip to send a link to her Humble Bundle page for Deus Ex, a popular shooter game about cyborgs. So, if you bump into her, you can tap your phone against the base of her thumb and get a free video game about human/robot hybrids. Here's a video of the operation, which starts at about the four-minute mark. It's not for the squeamish, and it certainly doesn't help that she had to inject it herself with a giant needle.

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3 years ago

Google Play Services 4.4 can tell when you're walking or running

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Google has released the 4.4 update for Google Play services, along with a list of new services and APIs. Features have been tweaked and added in the Maps API, new activity recognition features have been added, Games Services have been tweaked to allow multiple game gifts, Wallet fragments now allow an Instant Buy button inside an app, and a new way of displaying mobile ads will allow more targeted ads and direct purchase.

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3 years ago

Weekly Photo Contest: Red

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 Red

After seeing the success of our previous photo contest, "yellow," we're going to give it another whirl this week with a basic color-themed photo contest: "red." And when you think about it, it comes off last week's "bricks" contest quite well also. We're looking for the best pictures you can take that show off the color, idea or accent of red, and we can't wait to see what you do with it.

This week's entries are each in the running for an Android Central t-shirt, so you can show off your AC knowledge anywhere! We'll be picking three winners this week, so make those pictures great.

Entering is easy. Just drop your entry in a forums post at the link below. Tell us what Android you used to get the picture, and any back story you want to add to it. We'll pick a winner Tuesday (May 13) night at 11:59 PM ET, and announce them on the blog with next Wednesday's contest.

Enter this week's photo contest

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3 years ago

Google Player Developer console now lets you squelch draft and unpublished apps

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Here's a fun little addition to the Google Play developer console. You can now choose to filter out unpublished apps, or apps in draft status. That means we won't have to see our old Smartwatch Fans app anymore, now that we've unpublished it and replaced it with Connectedly. (Which you should totally download now!)

Nice.

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3 years ago

Google Wallet update adds quick account switcher, rearranges settings

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Falling in line with other recent Google app updates, Google Wallet is being updated today with a simple quick account switcher so you can access your various Wallet accounts easily. You'll now have the option to switch between active Google Accounts from the slide-in panel on the left of the app — along with re-entering that account's PIN — on the fly. A far cry from the previous version, which required you to wipe out the app entirely and start over with a new account.

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