4 years ago

The Cyber WEEK Savings continue at ShopAndroid.com - Save 25% on all Android through Friday night!

Cyber Monday, the biggest online shopping day of the year is now over (this being Thursday and all), but we're not stopping the savings just yet. If you've been itching to buy something from ShopAndroid.com and missed Cyber Monday, you can still get the savings through this Friday!

Until midnight PST Friday night, you can save 25 percent on all Android cases and accessories at ShopAndroid.com. If you haven't visited our store for a while, be sure to click over and take a browse. The selection is HUGE: cases, chargers, batteries, screen protectors, touchscreen-friendly gloves and more... you name it, you can buy it from our awesome store.

To take advantage of the Cyber Monday savings, all you need to do it use coupon code CYBER13 during the checkout process. It's as simple as that. Also a reminder that earlier this week we announced support for Bitcoin, so if you're sitting on a pile of Bitcoins now you can get it on the savings.

Thanks for supporting the Android community!!

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4 years ago

AT&T adds new Mobile Share options, with more savings if you're off-contract


AT&T today announced a handful of new options for its Mobile Share plans — including an 8GB bucket. But the bigger news is that the cost of your device is being separated from the service. And that means if you're not going with a subsidized phone — either because you're buying outright or are bringing your own device — you'll save $15 a month. And once your contract's up, you'll automatically moved to that cheaper, off-contract pricing. Not a bad thing at all.

And starting Dec. 8, AT&T's adding an 18-month upgrade option through its AT&T Next program. Payments are spread out over 26 months, and you can get a new phone every year and a half.

Source: AT&T

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4 years ago

Broadcom announces Bluetooth software stack for Android automotive connectivity


Chipmaker Broadcom has today unveiled a new Bluetooth software stack designed to enhance in-car connectivity for Android devices. The company claims its Android Automotive Bluetooth stack delivers improved audio quality for calls and streaming music over the wireless standard, while boasting Bluetooth Smart (a.k.a. Bluetooth Low Energy) support, allowing battery-efficient connectivity with wearable devices.

The new software stack is an extension of Broadcom's contributions to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP), and is available now to qualified customers — i.e. auto manufacturers, not end users. More technical details in the press release after the break.

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4 years ago

Samsung resumes international Galaxy S3 Android 4.3 updates


New firmware being pushed out starting today in parts of Europe

The Android 4.3 firmware rollout for Samsung's Galaxy S3 didn't go exactly to plan, leading to the manufacturer suspending the rollout to investigate numerous issues reported by S3 owners. Now it appears Samsung has completed its work squishing bugs in the 4.3 firmware as a new update is being pushed out to international Galaxy S3 (GT-i9300) owners in parts of Europe.

According to reports from SamMobile and XDA, the new firmware carries the build number I9300XXUGMK6, and was built on Nov. 28. Early reports from forums suggest that the performance and stability issues affecting the earlier update have been fixed in the latest build. As before, the 4.3 update also brings Samsung's KNOX enterprise security platform, as well as support for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

As always, the OTA will likely take at least a few days to filter out to all users; if you've got a European Galaxy S3, hit the comments and let us know if you've got this latest update.

Source: SamMobile, XDA

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4 years ago

Assassin's Creed Pirates now available on Google Play



Ubisoft's latest mobile plunderer, Assassin's Creed Pirates, is now available to purchase through Google Play. The game takes place in the same universe as the Assassin's Creed console titles, but sees players taking on the role of Alonso Batilla, sailing the seas in search of treasure as the Templars and Assassins play out their ancestoral war.

Our own Paul Acevedo had the chance to preview the game at Ubisoft's San Francisco HQ recently. Here's a snippet from his hands-on impressions:

"After the introductory cinematic wraps, players will set sail towards their meeting with La Buse at Scorpion’s Reef. Steering the ship takes place in a first-person perspective, just as in Assassin’s Creed IV. Swipe left or right along the ship’s wheel in order to navigate the waters and avoid obstacles.  Buttons at the bottom-right corner of the screen control acceleration and deceleration.

Ship battles consist of attack and defense phases. Drag left or right to aim your cannons. You’ll have to lead a little to compensate for the opponent’s movement, but firing too far ahead can lead to a miss too. Cannons take a little time to recharge, so all the more incentive to fire carefully."

Hit the Google Play link above to get started. The game sells for $4.99 in the U.S. and £2.99 in the UK.

More: Assassin's Creed Pirates preview

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4 years ago

Deutsche Telekom and Twitter enter strategic partnership


T-Mobile customers in parts of Europe will get home screen widget in 2014

Twitter and Deutsche Telekom, the German telecommunications giant behind T-Mobile, have entered into a strategic partnership that'll give the microblogging service more prominence on certain T-Mobile Android devices in parts of Europe. Under the agreement Twitter will "create a unique experience for Deutsche Telekom devices," including what sounds like a Twitter home screen widget preloaded on certain Android handsets from 2014. In return DT will get "early access to new tools and innovations on the technical side" and help with integrating Twitter into its marketing campaigns, according to a statement given to GigaOM, potentially giving the company a leg-up over the local competition.

The agreement will initially cover only Germany, the Netherlands, Romania, Greece and Croatia — a small subset of Deutsche Telekom's global reach. But as recent stats from PeerReach reveal, Germany in particular is an important market Twitter has yet to fully conquer, with just 1 percent market penetration in that country versus 11 percent in the UK.

Source: Deutsche Telekom; via: GigaOM, PeerReach

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4 years ago

AT&T and T-Mobile expected to bid for Verizon's 700MHz spectrum


Valuable block of spectrum could net Verizon a big profit on the sale

Verizon may be considering a sale of its 700MHz "A block" spectrum, and its no surprise that T-Mobile and AT&T are both in line to make a bid for it. Although Verizon continues to actively use the 700MHz spectrum, it has indicated previously that it would part with the valuable piece of airwaves for the right price, naturally. It purchased the rights to the A block for $2.4 billion, and has indicated that it won't part with it for less than $2.75 billion.

Reportedly both AT&T and T-Mobile are poised to bid for the spectrum. AT&T already holds the rights to adjacent 700MHz spectrum, and certainly has the cash to buy it if necessary. T-Mobile on the other hand operates its network primarily in the 1900MHz and AWS (1700/2100MHz) frequencies, and the 700MHz spectrum is undeniably more valuable than what they hold now.

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4 years ago

Google Play Books now available in 5 new countries


Google's book store now available in 44 countries around the world

Google Play Books is expanding to five new countries starting today. If you're in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Peru or Venezuela, you'll now have access to the Google Play Books ecosystem, bringing the total number of countries up to a staggering 44.

If you're in one of the above countries and want to check out the reading collection that Google Play has to offer, head to the Play Store and pick up a couple of good reads.

Source: Google Play Support

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4 years ago

Weekly Photo Contest: Transportation


It's time to show us how you get from here to there

Planes, trains and automobiles — we're always moving around for one reason or another. At least around this time of year, we're more likely to be traveling than not. "Transportation" is the prompt for this week's photo contest, but that doesn't have to mean a big hunk of metal moving at high speeds — we all get around more modestly sometimes. If you think about it, there are plenty of ways to express the concept of "transportation."

This week we'll have a single winner for this contest, and for their efforts they'll receive a Sony Cyber-shot QX10 lens camera accessory.

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 (December 10) 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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4 years ago

Google search now includes the data from installed apps


Relevant results from your own data now included

You've been able to search for installed apps by name for a while now, but today Google opened up a feature we first heard about when KitKat was announced — search hits from your installed app data.

You won't have to do anything, but developers of third party apps will. Some are ready, with names like IMDB, Wikipedia and Open Table already displaying relevant results. For these apps, the search result will include an "open in app" button that does exactly what you think it will — open the app with the relevant information ready for you. 

In addition, searching for apps will now show relevant results. A search for downhill ski app (Google's example) will show results from Google Play with a handy button to go fetch them.

Google is actively working with developers to get more apps included. If you're a developer and want in on the action, visit here to get started.

Source: Google

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4 years ago

Bluetooth 4.1 introduced with new features, development flexibility


Latest release focuses on aiding developer and manufacturer innovation

The Bluetooth SIG (Special Interest Group) announced today all of the new features coming with the latest release of the standard, Bluetooth 4.1. As you would expect with an incremental point release the bump to BT 4.1 isn't groundbreaking, but makes several solid improvements over 4.0.

The latest version focuses first in improving usability for end users — the BT SIG has worked to make sure Bluetooth and LTE radios can cooperate and not interfere with each other's transmissions in a device. The latest spec also lets manufacturers have more control over Bluetooth connections in terms of reconnection times and disconnect thresholds.

A big part of BT 4.1 is making it easier for developers to use the technology. Working to be at the center of the "Internet of Things," Bluetooth 4.1 lets any device be both a peripheral and a hub at the same time — for example a smartwatch could be a peripheral to a phone, but also be a hub to other peripherals such as a heart monitor or pedometer.

The Bluetooth SIG certainly sees even more potential in its technology, and with the new technological advances in 4.1 the spec is getting even more powerful.

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4 years ago

Google Santa Tracker 2013 page live, Android app coming soon


Google is getting ready for Christmas, and they want to help you keep track of Santa

Google has once again built a neat little Santa tracker page, complete with an advent calendar and interactive web elements. Point your browser right here, and you can count down the days until he makes his rounds, and click a few things in the calendar to keep track of all the happenings in Santa's village.

In addition to the web site, Google will be releasing this year's Android app once "the elves approve it" in mid December.

This looks like a lot of fun for the little ones in your life, or the big ones who still act like little ones around Christmas time. Be sure to check it out.

Source: Google

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4 years ago

Action Launcher 2.0 released with latest features, new free version


Pro version just $1.99, 50% off, for a limited time after launch

Popular third-party launcher Action Launcher has made a notable jump to version 2.0 today, bringing with it new features and a slightly different business model. Version 2.0 brings Quickdrawer, Covers, Shutters, Quicksearch and Quickpage out of beta for everyone to use, and also introduces a free version of Action Luncher.

Previously you had to go all-in with a $3.99 purchase of Action Launcher, but you can now get a taste of what it's all about for free and simply pay to unlock the "Pro" features at a later date. Those who have already purchased Action Launcher will have their version turned into an unlock key, and be prompted to download the most up-to-date version of the "free" app to get the latest features.

To celebrate the release, the Pro version is 50 percent off for a limited time as well, meaning you can pick up all of the latest features for just $1.99. You can take a quick video look at the latest version after the break, or head to the Play Store to download Action Launcher at the link above.

Source: +Chris Lacy

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4 years ago

Google Calendar improvements make it easier to get together for events


Never give out the wrong address for an event again

Google is rolling out changes to Google Calendar on the web that make it even easier to get friends and family together for events. To help ensure that everyone gets to the right place, when you type into the "where" box for a new event, you'll receive auto complete options for places pulled from the Google Maps database. When you go back to view the event later, or someone you invite views the event, you can simply click the "map" button and be taken to Google Maps to view the location.

Universal search is also being improved in Google Calendar. Just like in Gmail, you can start typing in the name of the event, attendees or location and get a list of results as you type with relevant events containing those key words or people. While these updates are specifically for the web version of Google Calendar, the existence of the new back-end could make this very easy to implement in later versions of the Android app.

With the latest changes, if you create events on the web with the new location search and select a specific place, that location will be a link to open Google Maps on your phone — it's a good start, and we look forward to both the location and search functions being improved on mobile soon.

Source: Gmail Blog

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4 years ago

Customers being charged for Acer C720P Chromebook orders from Amazon [update]


Product now 'in stock,' shipments should be on their way

Update: Amazon's page is now listing the Acer C720P as "in stock" for $299.99 with free shipping — no more pre-order status.

Original story: Those who pre-ordered the latest touchscreen Acer Chromebook from Amazon are being charged for their pre-orders today. Although the product is still indicates on the Amazon page that it hasn't been released yet, if the retailer is taking your money for an order then there's a good chance it's ready to go.

The Acer C720P is nearly identical to the other models of C720 that were released in the previous month, but with the addition of 32GB of storage and a touchscreen — all for $299. That's a pretty attractive package, and the first touchscreen Chromebook outside of the Pixel.

If you're looking to pick up a Chromebook this holiday season and have been holding out for a touchscreen model, chances are if you order now it'll be delivered in short order. You can place an order from the Amazon link below.

More: Pre-order the Acer C720P Chromebook from Amazon

Thanks, Marc!

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