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3 years ago

Google seeing issues with Drive, Docs this afternoon

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Hang tight, folks. Looks like Google Drive is struggling. Affected are Google Drive, Google Docs and Google Sheets.

We're investigating reports of an issue with Google Drive. We will provide more information shortly.

Google Sites has been added to the list as well, and the latest update says to look for more by the top of the hour.

More: Google Apps Status

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3 years ago

Project Tango is the future of Google's advanced smartphone efforts

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Developers can apply to receive one of 200 prototype units to build software for

Google ATAP (Advanced Technology and Projects), a small group of engineers inside the company dedicated to new and exciting projects, has announced its latest effort in the smartphone space — Project Tango. ATAP has been working with devices that leverage dozens of different sensors to monitor everything around you in brilliant 3D imagery. Not to be confused with Project Ara, Project Tango is coming from both a hardware and software perspective specifically focused on sensors and data collection.

"The goal of Project Tango is to give mobile devices a human-scale understanding of space and motion."

The end result is a 5-inch phone development prototype that takes advantage of their latest technologies — multiple cameras to monitor space, dozens of sensors to pinpoint the device's location and software that maps the world around it. Google ATAP sees this technology being useful for a wide variety of applications, from helping visually impaired people navigate the world to simply mapping a room for renovations or even gaming.

Starting today, developers will have the opportunity to apply and receive one of 200 available Project Tango development phones so that they can begin building software that takes advantage of the sensors and capabilities of the device. Developers will be chosen and devices will be sent out by March 14th, 2014.

Source: Google

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3 years ago

HTC One, One Max ranked highest in durability by SquareTrade

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HTC One found to be just as durable as the all-plastic Moto X

Following the announcement by HTC that it will start offering free broken screen replacements, the folks at SquareTrade decided to take a complete look at durability on HTC's most recent devices. Going through a testing system that looks at the physical aspects of a phone, how easy it is to hold and how well it survives a drop test (as much as we dislike those), SquareTrade ranked the HTC One, One Max, Moto X and Galaxy S4 against each other.

Despite its large size, ample glass and aluminum construction, the HTC One came out on top — tied with the plastic-bodied Moto X — with a "breakability score" of just 4.5 on a scale of 10. The One Max, because of its larger size, came out with a 5.5. The HTC One received high marks for its front panel construction, grip-ability, water resistance and slide and drop tests. The screen is well-protected by the ample metal bezels, and actually performed surprisingly well when being dunked in water.

You can see the full results of the testing for all four phones, including a video showing the test methods for the HTC One, after the break.

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3 years ago

Waze for Android now syncs with your calendar

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A quick heads up for you Waze users — the traffic-mapping app just unleashed an update that syncs up with your calendar. It's optional — so if you prefer not to use it you can turn it off in the advanced settings. 

And update to the iPhone version is coming, Waze said. But for now, Android first!

Snag the update at the link above.

More: Waze blog

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3 years ago

Facebook’s $16 billion WhatsApp acquisition a bold move for the global instant messaging market

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The news of Facebook acquiring WhatsApp for an enormous pile of money is front and center in the mobile communication industry today, and for good reason. Having watched WhatsApp grow from nothing into a cross platform winner over the last five years and doing a darn good job of executing on a growth plan, I'm impressed with what they've done. And while I was shocked to see the deal's valuation, I've taken some time to think about it rationally, and it might not be that insane.

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3 years ago

What would Nokia Asha mean with Android?

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Nokia might be about to dip its toe into Android waters, but that doesn't mean we should all run out and celebrate

Normandy. A name we've been hearing with increasing frequency of late. Why? Because if the rumor mills have been churning the right way, then Normandy – now referred to as Nokia X – is a forthcoming Nokia smartphone based on Android. If all goes according to what we've heard so far, it will break cover at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Feb. 24.

Nokia famously went all in on Windows Phone for its main line of devices. But, it also held on to the Asha line. It's this that the Nokia X is expected to either slot in to, or replace entirely. There has been quite the media buzz around Nokia X. So, before heading out to Barcelona lets take a look at what it is, and what it would mean with Android onboard.

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3 years ago

This week's sidebar poll: Do you use a third-party messaging app?

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Stand-alone messenger apps are popular, but how popular? Take this week's poll.

I admit it. I only use Hangouts (formerly G Talk) for messaging on my phone. I have Google Voice for folks I don't know well enough to add to hangouts, and I have Skype installed for communication here at Mobile Nations, though I never use it. I've only installed others to make sure they do what they claim to do while writing about them. Maybe I'm boring, or maybe SMS and Hangouts is just good enough for me.

But I imagine I'm in the minority. It seems like everyone uses FaceBook Messenger, or WhatsApp (who'd have thought the two would get together, right?) or SnapChat — and not just for that type of texting. The download numbers tell me that a lot of people are using the apps, and hearing from you guys and gals who love them only solidifies the idea.

So, do you use a third-party messenger, and if so which one? There's a poll in the sidebar to the right, and after the break to make things nice and mobile-friendly. Make your choice, then fill the comments with discussion.

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3 years ago

LG G2 Mini gets a video teaser

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LG just officially announced the LG G2 Mini, and we'll get a good look at it next week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Now we've got a very brief teaser video to go along with it. Nothing particularly stands out, other than apparently it turns you into a shredderiffic skater boy.

More: LG G2 Mini specs

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S5 could go on sale in just three weeks

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The Samsung Galaxy S5 hasn't even been announced yet, but already focus is beginning to turn to when we'll actually be able to buy the phone. Today our first clue comes from GSMArena, which says it's been told by an unnamed Samsung executive that the GS5 will be arriving in three weeks time. The outlet says it's received corroborating information from other "trustworthy sources," which would point to Samsung's next big thing hitting store shelves in mid-March.

If this is accurate, the interval between launch and retail release would match the relatively quick turnaround of the Galaxy Note 3, which was available three weeks after its announcement. It might also see Samsung going to market ahead of HTC, which has scheduled the launch events for its new HTC One for Mar. 25.

The official word on Samsung's Galaxy S5 launch plans should come at the Unpacked 5 event next Monday, and we'll be live from Barcelona to bring you full coverage.

Source: GSMArena

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3 years ago

New HTC One (M8) leaks out in gray and silver [Updated]

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Update: @evleaks has followed up with another M8 render, this time showing the device in silver. You'll find it after the break.

Original story: Following yesterday's leak of the 2014 HTC One — also known by the codename "M8" — in gold, leaker @evleaks has today published a render of the device in gray. The chassis design appears the same as in the earlier leak — an HTC One-like design with dual rear cameras, on-screen buttons and a wraparound metal chassis. The dark gray color is one of five rumored for the M8 — others include gold, silver, red and blue — and it's a little lighter than last year's "stealth black" HTC One.

The 2014 HTC One is expected to be unveiled at launch events in London and New York on Mar. 25.

Source: @evleaks (2)

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3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 + 10.1 up for pre-order in the UK, shipping March 4

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Free 32GB microSD card with pre-orders from Samsung's online store

Samsung launched its monstrous Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 tablet in the U.K. a couple of weeks back, and now it's time for the Tab Pro series to arrive in the country. Samsung's online store is now taking pre-orders for the Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 and 10.1, priced at £349 and £449 respectively for the Wifi-only versions. And to sweeten the deal the manufacturer is throwing in a free 32GB microSD card for everyone who pre-orders.

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3 years ago

Nokia X shows its tiled face before Mobile World Congress

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Nokia's first Android device has a whiff of the Windows Phone about it

The Nokia X – or Normandy as it has been known – leaks continue, with this claiming to be an actual full front on shot of the device. The image is one of a series that has appeared in China at Coolxap and shows the design we've seen many times before along with a very Windows Phone-esque user interface.

As we'd expect, there's no sight of anything Google related, but Nokia's own Here Maps are present and correct. There's also a Store clearly shown, so providing everything is legit, Nokia it seems has decided how the X will be getting its apps.

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3 years ago

Sprint Galaxy Note 3 KitKat update now rolling out

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Right on cue, Sprint's Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is starting to receive its update to Android 4.4 KitKat, with a 503MB over-the-air update now going out to some devices. The update brings the Sprint Note 3 up to Android 4.4.2 KitKat and introduces some minor visual tweaks, such as white status bar icons in place of the colored graphics of old.

KitKat's arrival on the Sprint Note 3 is part of Samsung's U.S. release plans for Android 4.4 — the latest version of Android is due to hit 14 phones and tablets on U.S. carriers in the near future.

Source: Android Central forums

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

Acer announces two new Liquid series phones

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Liquid E3 and Liquid Z4 headed to Europe this April

Acer is continuing their push into Europe, and today they are announcing both the photographer-centric Liquid E3 and the mid-range Liquid Z4.

The E3 features a 4.7-inch HD IPS display, encased in a full unibody design. Under the glass you'll find a quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and Android 4.2.2 — which Acer says will be updated to KitKat later this year. The unique feature of the E3 is the specially designed LED flash, that when coupled with the 2MP camera has automatic settings for optimal portrait picture opportunities. The 13MP rear camera with "extra-fast" focus and great low-light abilities. Acer also includes Snap Note, an app designed for presenters, and AcerFloat which offers floating multi-windows.

The Z4 looks to be a general-purpose mid-range device, which means it fits in nicely with Acer's Z series. The 4-inch screen and dual-core processor will give the power to run all your favorite apps, and the "best in class" 5MP camera and LED flash lets users take photos and upload them to social media sites or share with friends and family. The software also includes AcerFloat — the multi-window desktop — and four user modes for the homescreen layout ranging from a kids mode, to an easy mode, "classic" Android and a special keypad mode. The Liquid Z4 will come in two colors: Essential White and Titanic Black.

Both phones should be available in Europe this April. The Liquid E3 will retail for €199, and the Liquid Z4 has a list price of €99. Acer will have the phones and more information at Mobile World Congress later this month, so look for more on these two from Barcelona. See both press releases and product images after the break.

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3 years ago

HTC working on three wearables including Toq-based model and Google Now watch, report claims

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Prototype of HTC watch based on Qualcomm Toq to be shown to carriers at MWC, reports Bloomberg

As HTC continues to face tough times in the smartphone market, the Taiwanese manufacturer has said it's looking to other product categories to boost revenues in 2014, including wearables.

This morning Bloomberg reports that a prototype of one HTC smartwatch will be showed to carrier partners at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, though there are no plans to show the device publicly. The watch will reportedly be based on Qualcomm's Toq design and feature a display using the company's Mirasol technology. Other features are said to include Bluetooth connectivity, naturally, and a music player.

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