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4 years ago

Printing in Android 4.4 KitKat (with some help from HP)

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Printers, as we all know all too well, are fickle beasts on a good day. So you'll forgive us for not expecting too much when it comes to printing wirelessly from our phones. But there's a new printing framework built into Android 4.4 KitKat. On the back end, you'll be able to print over Wifi, or Google Cloud Print. Here's how Google puts it:

Android 4.4 introduces native platform support for printing, along with APIs for managing printing and adding new types of printer support. The platform provides a print manager that mediates between apps requesting printing and installed print services that handle print requests. The print manager provides shared services and a system UI for printing, giving users consistent control over printing from any app. The print manager also ensures the security of content as it's passed across processes, from an app to a print service.

Your mileage may vary, of course. But, we're happy to report, our first experience with the new printing framework — at least from an end-user standpoint and with some help from an HP plugin — worked flawlessly.

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4 years ago

T-Mobile reports 1 million customers added, $6.7 billion revenue in Q3 2013

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Carrier now has over 45 million customers, MetroPCS integration moving along

T-Mobile has just posted its Q3 2013 earnings, and the nation's fourth-place carrier is looking at strong growth once again. The so-called UNcarrier posted increased revenues, a decreased loss for the quarter and big net customer additions:

  • $6.7 billion in revenues for the quarter, up 7.4 percent from Q2 and 37 percent from Q3 2012
  • $297 million in operating income, up 64 percent from Q2
  • $36 million in net loss, improved 33 percent from Q2
  • 1.02 million net customer additions for the quarter
  • 45.04 million total customers at the end of the quarter

The quarter shows strong growth in both service and handset revenues, mostly due to the incorporation of MetroPCS into the carrier. T-Mobile added 672,000 branded customers for the quarter, of which 648,000 were postpaid. Postpaid ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) decreased in Q3 to $52.20 primarily due to the adoption of Simple Choice, with prepaid ARPU also raising slightly to $35.71.

It's another strong quarter for T-Mobile, and with the big moves it has been making we don't expect the growth to stop any time soon.

Source: T-Mobile

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4 years ago

Archos announces 101 XS 2 tablet

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Coming in December priced £249.99

Achos has announced the latest tablet in its Gen 11 range, the Archos 101 XS 2.  It's a 10.1-inch 1280x800-resolution tablet with front-facing speakers and a Archos' "Coverboard" keyboard cover — a magnetic keyboard which clips onto the device. On the inside it's powered by an 1.6GHz quad-core CPU with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage, backed up by Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and the full complement of Google apps. Archos has also bundled OfficeSuite Pro 6 for MS Office document support, along with its own suite of media center apps for movie and TV show playback.

The tablet is due to arrive in the UK this December, priced £249.99 from Archos' own web store.

Source: Archos

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4 years ago

Verizon announces their own tablet - the Ellipsis 7 will debut Nov. 7 for $250

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Want a 7-inch LTE tablet on Verizon? You could get the Nexus 7, and fight with Verizon to try and get it activated, or you could wait until Thursday and pick up the new Verizon brand Ellipsis 7 — Big Red's very own HD Android tablet.

The Press release is short on specs, but we do know the Ellipsis 7 comes with Google Play installed, has a front facing camera, an HD screen, and is fully Verizon Wireless LTE compliant. At $250 off contract, it's also cheaper than the LTE Nexus 7 and the LTE Kindle Fire HDX 7. In addition, Verizon will give you $100 off the price if you are signing up for a new contract.

The Ellipsis 7 is listed as the first product in the Elipsis line. I've a feeling we'll be seeing more. 

Source: Verizon

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4 years ago

How to unlock the Nexus 5 bootloader

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It's easier to unlock your Nexus 5 bootloader than it is to decide if you want to do it

If you're receiving your shiny new Nexus 5 in the near future, you'll want to think about unlocking the boot loader. It's a bigger undertaking than the folks on the Internet make it out to be, and doing it later is a huge pain in the kiester, so it's worth talking about. 

First things first. Since it's a Nexus device, it was designed to be easily unlocked. There is no extra encryption layer, no signing your life and warranty away at the website of the people who made your phone, and no software hacks to try to bust your way around things. You only need the SDK and be able to use the command line — which are things you need to know about before you ever decide to unlock your phone anyway.

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4 years ago

HTC One Mini now available on Rogers

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Today sees the launch of the HTC One Mini on Canada's Rogers network. Starting today the One Mini can be yours for C$99.99 on a two-year plan, or C$399.99 on a month-to-month deal.

As the name suggests, the One Mini is a smaller version of the HTC One with cut-down internal hardware. It's got a 4.3-inch 720p display, a Snapdragon 400 CPU and 1GB of RAM, coupled with 16GB of internal storage. Around the back is the same "Ultrapixel" sensor found on the HTC One, only without optical image stabilization. Software-wise, it's HTC Sense 5 and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean running the show.

When we reviewed the international HTC One Mini over the summer we found it to be one of the best small form factor Android phones out there. For more details, check it out at the link below.

More: HTC One Mini review

Source: Rogers; via: MobileSyrup

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4 years ago

Gaze inside the torn-open Nexus 5

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The folks at iFixit are doing their thing again, this time with the Nexus 5. Not that most of us will ever venture down this road, but apparently much of the phone is easy to get to and swap out. Except for the front panel and display.

Source: iFixit

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4 years ago

HTC One Android 4.3 + Sense 5.5 update lands in the UK

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After a limited European rollout two weeks ago, UK devices are now getting the latest update

HTC UK has announced that HTC One devices in the UK should begin receiving their update to Android 4.3 and HTC Sense 5.5 from today. The update brings the HTC flagship up to software version 3.62.401.1, including updated video highlights and gallery app, new features in BlinkFeed (including the option to turn it off entirely) in addition to the newer version of Google's OS. The UK rollout follows a limited launch on some European devices a couple of weeks back.

What's next? Well, HTC's already hard at work getting Android 4.4 KitKat updates ready.

We've got the changelog for today's 4.3 update after the break.

Source: @HTC_UK

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4 years ago

HTC forecasts tough times continuing into Q4, reflects on Q3 'progress'

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HTC's finalized Q3 earnings report confirms what we already knew from the unaudited report a few weeks back — the Taiwanese manufacturer had a pretty dire quarter, leading to an operating loss of just over $100 million, the first in the company's history.

Posting a quarterly revenue of NT$47 billion, with a gross margin of 20.4% and an operating margin of -7.4%, net loss was reported at NT$3 billion, earnings per share after tax were -NT$3.58.

Despite this, HTC CEO Peter Chou reflected on "strong progress" made in Q3 in a statement with today's release. The report highlighted the quarter's many product launches, including the Verizon HTC One, HTC One Mini, One Max, Desires 601 and 300, and yes, even the Hello Kitty Butterfly S. The quarter also saw HTC launch a new marketing campaign in partnership with Robert Downey Jr., which it credits for a 12 percent increase in advertising awareness and a 15 percent boost in brand awareness. Meanwhile the partnership with Beats Audio came to an end, with HTC selling its remaining stake in the company for $415 million. HTC's latest phone, the One Max, was launched last month without any Beats software or branding.

The company's Q4 forecast points to hard times continuing to the end of 2013, with revenue between NT$40-45 billion, gross profit margins of 20% +/-1% and EPS (earnings per share) of NT$0.1 to NT$1.7. The forecast raises the prospect of a second quarter of losses should HTC miss its targets by even a small amount.

More: Stock Talk: HTC's Q3 loss isn't good, but neither is it unexpected

Source: HTC Investor Relations, The Verge

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4 years ago

Chrome Beta includes simpler tab switcher for low-memory phones

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KitKat's low-memory focus extends to Chrome's latest beta release

Behind all the visual changes and feature additions, Android 4.4 KitKat is all about optimizing the way Android uses memory, including a new API for handling devices with as little as 512MB of RAM. And it seems this focus has extended to Google's Chrome browser too — Googler François Beaufort points out on Google+ that the latest Chrome Beta includes an alternative tab-switcher for low-RAM phones. As you'll see above, it consists of just a text description and icon, as opposed to a full-page preview.

Beaufort says the new layout is designed to be simpler and is specifically targeted at "low memory KitKat devices." In the current Chrome 31 beta it can be enabled by navigating to chrome://flags/#accessibility-tab-switcher and flipping the switch manually. The idea, presumably, is that when entry-level KitKat phones begin shipping this new tab-switcher will automatically replace the traditional card-based layout, while leaving the standard interface in place on beefier phones like the Nexus 5.

Source: +François Beaufort

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4 years ago

EE to trial LTE-Advanced in London from December

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Carrier boasts 300Mbps speeds for businesses in London's Tech City area

Always looking to cement its lead over rival providers, UK LTE network operator EE has announced that it's partnered with Huawei to bring data speeds of up to 300Mbps to London's Tech City, as part of its LTE-Advanced trials. The scheme will kick off in December in conjunction with businesses in Tech City, an area of East London home to many high-tech organizations. Customers won't be able to get these faster data speeds directly on devices until mid-2014 though, instead the trial will begin using Huawei Cat. 6 Wifi hotspots, which will provide access over an 802.11 ac connection.

To achieve such high speeds EE says it's paired 20MHz of 1800MHz spectrum with a further 20MHz of 2.6GHz obtained through the recent 4G spectrum auction. The EE 300Mbps trial is due to be extended to other parts of London in 2014 — naturally, you'll need an as yet unreleased Cat. 6 mobile device to take advantage of the faster network when it's available.

Source: EE

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4 years ago

Google's Helpouts is now official, experts standing by

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System now live for those seeking help, still invite-only for experts

Google is making its aptly-named help service Helpouts official today, giving you access to experts in different areas via Google Hangouts. The basic premise of Helpouts is to work as a middleman for connecting those who need knowledge with those who have it on a certain topic, and letting those people learn from one another. The help can be about anything — music lessons, yoga tips, baking advice, you name it — and can be either free or paid.

We now know you can seek help from trusted brands as well as individuals, and that you'll have the full range of tools available to you through Hangouts normally. That means you can work on documents with your helper, share your screen, record the session and much more. Google is limiting the categories currently offering help, but seems to have a decent number of experts ready to go at this time.

Heading to the Helpouts page, you can simply type into an "I need help with..." search box and see results of people ready to help you. There are experts working for free, on a flat "per Helpout" or per minute rate available now, in genres from cooking to fashion and home & garden. If you're ready to give it a try, hit the second source link below.

Source: Google; Helpouts

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4 years ago

Soak test updates hitting new Droids starting tomorrow

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What specifically the update contains is still unknown at this point

We had more than a hunch it was coming, and now we have confirmation that those participating in the soak test for Verizon's latest Droids (Mini, Ultra and Maxx) are receiving an update starting tomorrow. Now what exactly you'll get if you're part of the program is unknown — our best guess is probably the same camera update that Moto X users received recently, but you never know with these sorts of black box updates.

Any update is probably welcomed though, and chances are it'll be something you'll actually want. If you didn't get in on the soak test this time around, rest assured that the updates usually push out to everyone quickly after the soak test, provided no extreme bugs are found.

More: Droid Maxx Forums | Droid Ultra Forums

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4 years ago

From the floor of the Samsung Developers Conference

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One final video out of the Samsung Developers Conference — and it might well be the most important of the bunch. Day 2 of the event saw the exhibitor floor open up, with products from Samsung, partners and basically anyone who had anything awesome to show off was on hand. 

Six minutes of video barely starts to scratch the surface. We had consumer products. Enterprise. An eight-rotor drone copter that I'm pretty sure followed us around the rest of the afternoon.

Check it out — and we'll see you next year!

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4 years ago

Screen recording is easy with KitKat and the Android SDK

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The new API 19 SDK tools include an easy way to record what happens on your Android's screen

Ever wanted to record exactly what's happening on your Android screen? Anyone who writes about Android for a living sure does, and now that KitKat is in the wild we see it will be easy to do with the latest version of Android.

You'll need the SDK installed, which is a little barrier for some, but there are plenty of folks in the forums to help make that happen for any computer, be it Windows, Mac or Linux.

That's also where you'll find Phil's mini How-To on screen recording, complete with examples. If you have you Nexus 5 already, or have put some flavor of KitKat on your current phone, jump in and give it a look. It's easier than you think!

How to use screen recording in Android 4.4 KitKat

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