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5 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Ace DUOS sees wider release


Looks like the Galaxy Ace DUOS, Samsung's latest dual-SIM offering, is about to launch in a few more countries from next month, following its initial release in India back in February. The phone will be released initially in Russia in June, with Europe, CIS, Latin America, Southeast and Southwest Asia, Middle East, Africa, and China following thereafter. Dual-SIM devices generally target developing countries, where cellular services are mostly pre-paid, and coverage areas are patchy.

The Ace DUOS features the familiar combination of Android 2.3 Gingerbread and version 4 of Samsung's TouchWiz UI, running on a 3.5-inch HVGA screen, with an 832MHz single-core CPU. Other notable specs include a 5MP rear camera, HSDPA support up to 7.2Mbps, 512MB of RAM and 3GB of internal storage, plus a microSD card slot. It's certianly no Galaxy S III, but for the emerging markets Samsung's targeting, it's enough to provide a basic, functional smartphone experience.

Check past the break for today's full press release.

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5 years ago

Google Play launches in-app subscriptions


Google Play continues to expand upon the business models available to developers and app-buyers, with today's launch of in-app subscription on its Android app store. Following on from last year's in-app purchases launch, Google Play's in-app subscriptions service provides the ability for apps to charge a monthly or yearly fee for in-app content. As you'd expect, the payment amount and renewal period is set by the developer, and users are able to manage these recurring payments through the Google Play Store. And unwanted subscriptions can be canceled via the new "Subscriptions" tab under "My Apps."

In its announcement blog post, Google highlights in-app subscriptions as being particularly useful for "premium dynamic content," such as newspapers and magazines. And if you're also an iOS user, you'll be aware that this is a service that Apple's offered since this time last year, with the specific aim of attracting this kind of content to its app store.

The first Android app to ship with in-app subscriptions is Glu Mobile's Frontline Commando, and Google says more devs will announce subscription-funded versions of their apps in the days ahead. Other devs can pick up sample code over at the source link. If you're looking to manage your own subscriptions, you'll need version 3.5 or higher of the Google Play Store app, which Google says has already been rolled out to most Android devices around the world.

Source: Android Developers blog

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5 years ago

'Because We May' sale brings discounted prices to 57 Android games


If you're looking for an excuse to pick up some top-notch Android games over the next week, you'll want to check out the "Because We May" sale, which has kicked off today. The sale, crated by a band of leading mobile game developers, brings heavy discounts to favorites of ours, including World of Goo, Osmos, EDGE and Fieldrunners HD. Many are on sale for under £2, while some are even 99 cents or less.

What's the big idea behind Because We May? The devs point to a celebration of the freedom offered by modern digital distribution channels like Google Play and the iOS App Store --

We believe that developers should have the freedom to price their games how they like, without interference from the online stores that sell the games. Why? Because it allows us to promote our games more freely, as we are doing here! We rely on the ability to promote our games for our livelihood and control over pricing is an important tool for this purpose.

The sale runs for the next week, so you've got until next Friday, June 1, to get your fill of some of the best Android games around. And if you're a multi-platform type, the "Because We May" sale also has discounts on iOS, Mac and Steam titles.

Hit the source link for the full list of discounted games on Google Play.

Source: Because We May

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5 years ago

Zen Bound 2 [Android Game Review]


We could probably all use a little more Zen in our lives. With the stress of work, bills, family, etc., it can be hard to take a moment, relax, and just be calm. Like Osmos HD and Gravilux before it, Zen Bound 2 looks to continue the proud tradition of Android games that both bake your noodle and calm your nerves.

The premise of Zen Bound 2 is simple: wrap a rope around a wooden figurine. Everywhere the rope touches, the wood is painted. Your goal is to paint as much of the wood as you can while using the least amount of string. When you're all done painting, you then​ have to maneuver the rope around a nail sticking out of the figurine and tie a knot. Once the knot is tied, the level is over.

For each level you play, there's minimum conditions for winning, based on what percent of the figurine you paint. Paint more of the figurine, you get more flowers. Paint less, receive less. (Flowers are the reward/currency for unlocking more levels.)

This mechanic forces you to go a replay levels you tried to burn through, as you'll soon realize that the levels you want to be at are more expensive than the flowers you've got. It's actually pretty brilliant in that regard, because playing levels over again is great practice and keeps you coming back.

Zen Bound 2 also lives right up to its name. The background music is soft and ambient, with the occasional tinkle of wind chimes and other wooden instruments. It's all very subdued and under the surface, contributing to the calming vibe. Make sure you dim the lights and put your feet up before loading this game up.

Zen Bound 2 is $2.99 in the Google Play Store. We've got video and download links after the break.

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5 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Note ICS update now pushing out in India


If you're rocking a Samsung Galaxy Note in India, then there should be an Ice Cream Sandwich flavored treat waiting for you. The 319MB update is available both through the Kies desktop software, and also OTA. To check for the OTA, head on over to Settings > About Phone > Software Updates. 

As we found out right from our first hands on with the US version, on the face of it things won't look much different post-update. It's still Touchwiz -- albeit the latest version -- which fronts the UI, but there are some additional features worth remembering such as updated S-Memo and S-Note applications. To take a look at all the features ICS brings to the Note, check out Samsung's promo video after the break. 

via AndroidOS.in

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5 years ago

IDC numbers are in, Android leads the way


According to the IDC, Android accounts for 59% of all smartphone sales worldwide.  This is a healthy jump from last year when Android accounted for 36.1% of smartphone sales.  iOS is second, with 23% of sales.  Last year the two smartphone OS's owned 54.4% of the market combined, ​so this is impressive growth.  Android showed a 145% year-over-year change, at the expense of Symbian, which went from 26% in 1Q11 to just 6.8% in 1Q12.

Samsung is the big winner here, accounting for 45.4% of all Android smartphone sales.  This is due in no small part to the success of the Galaxy S II and Galaxy Note, both of which have racked up impressive sales numbers.  With the looming launch of the Galaxy S III Samsung is showing no signs of slowing down, either.

Source: Business Wire

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5 years ago

Beautifully redesigned Google+ experience is here!


Our iOS-loving pals got this one a couple weeks ago, but now it's our turn. The redesigned Google+ app is now available for Android. And quite an update it is. In addition to the visual refresh, you'll get the following:

  • Initiate a Hangout from the main menu
  • Support for ringing hangout notification
  • Support for post editing
  • Messenger suggestions for people you may know
  • Download photos from posts or Messenger conversations

The ability to edit posts is a godsend, as well as being able to download photos from posts. Hit the link below to snag it directly. And don't forget to circle Android Central as well!

Download: Google+; More: Google

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5 years ago

NVIDIA Icera modem validated for AT&T's LTE network


NVIDIA has announced that their Icera 410 multimode data modem has been tested and approved for use with AT&T's LTE network. This means that NVIDIA has officially entered the race with Qualcomm to provide embedded LTE equipment for Tablets, and interestingly enough clamshell devices (mentioned by name) on AT&T. The Icera 410 will provide multiband connectivity for 2G, 3G, HSPA+, and LTE category 2 (50Mbps) from one chip, which we've already seen gives a nice boost in battery life compared to multiple hardware radios. No word on anything phone related just yet, this sort of thing goes in baby steps. We're excited every time we see a new player in the game, and can't wait to give a new NVIDIA powered LTE device on AT&T a try. Hit the break for the full, but brief, press release.

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5 years ago

Panasonic Eluga Power now expected in Q3, says retailer


If you had your eye on the Eluga Power, Panasonic's gigantic ICS-powered beast, it seems you may have to wait just a little big longer. According to British online retailer Clove Technology, the Eluga Power's UK launch has slipped into the third quarter of 2012 -- a change from the previously-announced Q2 launch window.

As we saw when we went hands-on with the Eluga Power at MWC, it's a thin, light 5-inch device with a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 CPU. When we saw it back in February, the Power was running vanilla Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, though it's possible the the finished product will feature some kind of UI customization. Other notables include a 720p screen based upon Panasonic's own LCD tech, IP57 water resistance, and an 8MP rear camera.

Check out our full hands-on report for more on the Eluga Power.

Source: Clove Technology

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5 years ago

Sony Xperia P, U and Sola now available internationally


Sony unveiled the Xperia P and Xperia U at its MWC 2012 press conference, and wasted no time in announcing the Xperia Sola a few weeks later. And now all three devices have gone on sale in Europe and Asia, further fleshing out Sony's 2012 smartphone line-up.

The Xperia Sola is arguably the most interesting of the three -- it features the manufacturer's new "floating touch" technology, which enables the device to detect when your finger is hovering over the screen, without any contact being made. Sony has highlighted a few uses for this tech -- for example, precisely selecting links on a webpage before tapping to confirm. But we're also eager to see what community devs are able to do with this tech in the months ahead.

Next up there's the Xperia P, which is essentially a miniature Xperia S with an aluminum shell and slightly pared-back specs. Inside there's a 1GHz dual-core CPU (down from 1.5), a 4-inch qHD screen (down from 720p), and an 8MP rear camera (down from 12MP). And specs are further cut back in the entry-level Xperia U, which rocks a 3.5-inch FWVGA screen, 5MP camera and a matte plastic finish, though it's still running a dual-core 1GHz CPU.

However, Sony's Achilles' Heel is Gingerbread -- all three devices use Android 2.3, though ICS updates are promised before the end of June.

In the UK, the Sola will set you back around £250, while Xperias P and U will run you around £320 and £170 respectively. If you're after a network-subsidized deal, O2, Three, T-Mobile and Orange offer the Xperia U, while O2 has the Xperia P. No major network has yet announced the Xperia Sola.

We'll have reviews of all three going up in the days and weeks ahead, so keep watching.

Source: XperiaBlog

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5 years ago

Three UK increasing prices from July, applies to pay-monthly plans set up before March 8 2012


It might only be 3.6%, but a price increase is still a price increase. That's how much Three UK has announced that price plans will be increasing by come July 16. It doesn't apply to all customers -- anyone joining after March 8 this year or that is on a 1-month SIM only, a business or a pay-as-you-go deal won't be affected. So, should you be heading down to Three for a new Samsung Galaxy S III in the next couple of weeks, the price you sign up to is the price you'll continue to pay.

On my current plan, it looks like I'll be hit for about another £1.30 per month, or just under £16 per year. Ok, so hit is probably too strong a term. Thankfully, it's just a small price increase. No increase will be applied to any add-ons, so if you're paying extra for all-you-can-eat data (like I am) the increase will only be applied to your basic tariff price. 

Three say that their plans still represent "excellent value for money," which is a pretty fair comment to make, considering they're one of the few UK networks offering unlimited data. Anyone affected will be receiving a text, email or letter -- yes, people do still send letters -- outlining their additional charges. The increase will then take effect from the first billing date on or after July 16.

It's the first time in the company's history that their prices have had to increase in such a way on their pay monthly tariffs. While price rises are never welcome, we can at least be grateful that it isn't a big increase. More importantly, Three aren't taking anything away. After all, there is a recession on.

Source: Three UK

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5 years ago

Asus Padfone and TF700 set for Australian launch in July


Asus Australia have taken to their Facebook page to hint at an eta for the forthcoming Transformer Pad TF700 tablet, and the tablet-phone-laptop combined Padfone. Following the launch at MWC in Barcelona, there are eager customers waiting around the world to get their hands on these devices. There isn't much to go on, but according to Asus both devices can be expected in July. 

There is also no indication on a potential price point for either device, but you would expect it to be towards the more 'premium' end of the price scale. The Padfone in particular is an interesting concept, but one which could be massively let down if the price is too high when all the accessories are taken into account. 

The TF700 is no slouch either, packing a full HD Super IPS+ display at a 1920x1200 resolution over either a Tegra 3, or a Snapdragon S4 processor. Oh, and there's Asus' signature keyboard dock as well. Price will again play a part in the success of the TF700 -- and not just in Australia -- but on specs alone, it's a winner. 

via Ausdroid

More: Hands on with the Asus Padfone at Mobile World Congress

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5 years ago

AT&T One X RUU leaks, brings version 1.85.502 with it



There's not a lot to go on here, and so far nobody has come forward to tell how well (or how poorly) it runs, but a new RUU has leaked out for the AT&T One X. The update brings the One X to version 1.85.502, and breaks all current rooting methods. It's a standard HTC RUU, so that means Windows only and the proper drivers need to be installed. Note that this may not be the final update version, and you may end up stuck with it if you flash it.

Anyone who gives this one a try should be sure to let the rest of us know about any changes or improvements. Grab it at the source link.

Source: XDA-Developers

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5 years ago

Intel releases x86 system image for Android emulator


Intel has released the long awaited x86 system image of Ice Cream Sandwich for the Android SDK and emulator. This will allow the Android emulator (long plagued with slow and buggy performance) to run at native speed on computers using the Intel x86 architecture.  Grabbing it is easy enough, just refresh the SDK Manager and grab it under the Android 4.0.3 tree. Of course, it seems like everyone else has the same idea so the download times are a bit high and you may want to wait an hour or so. We love seeing the developer tools get updated as much as we love seeing Android phones get updated. Better tools mean better apps, and everyone loves better apps. Don't forget us here at AC when you design the next great one!

via: +Xavier Ducrohet


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5 years ago

Leaked memo says Best Buy to fill EVO 4G LTE orders as soon as May 24


We just got a tip from one of those ninja types, and we now know that the rumors of truckloads of EVO 4G LTE's en-route to Best Buy are true, and they will be used to fill all the pre-orders. According to the leaked memo above, folks who pre-ordered can start getting their phones as soon as they arrive at stores, which may be as early as tomorrow (May 24). What's interesting is that this inventory is set aside only to fulfill pre-orders, and any phones left over can't be sold until an official launch day announcement. Then there's the notice that pre-orders are still open, so those that didn't get in on the initial pre-order, but want to buy one of the EVO 4G LTE's that may be sitting on the shelf, can pre-order one, then get it that same day. I think. Maybe. And only off by one day

Welcome to BizarroWorld. 

Anyhoo, we're excited that this messy launch is almost behind us, and phones will soon be in Android-loving hands where they belong. 

Thanks, Anon!

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