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4 years ago

T-Mobile's HTC One gets fix for LTE data, stability

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T-Mobile today announced an update to its HTC One that works on a trio of issues. Here's what's new in software version 1.27.531.11:

  • Software stability
  • LTE and reception
  • Processor enhancements

The update keeps things on Android 4.1.2 — we're not expecting 4.2.2 in the U.S. for a little while still — and weighs in at 247 megabytes.

Source: T-Mobile; more: HTC One forums; Thanks, Steve!

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4 years ago

Review: The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini

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Is Sa​msung's latest 'Mini' a mid-range champion or a disappointing compromise?

For better or worse, we've arrived in a world where smartphones with the word "mini" in their names also have 4.3-inch displays, once considered huge. The Galaxy S4 Mini is one of the first such devices to pass across our desk, having been launched at a glitzy London event alongside two other "Galaxy S4" smartphones — the S4 Active and S4 Zoom. Superficially, the Galaxy S4 Mini looks like its name would suggest — it's a "miniature" Galaxy S4. The design, software and build quality remain mostly unchanged in the Mini. But as with any smaller, cheaper phone, corners have been cut in places. Specifically, the Mini's screen has a lower resolution, there's less internal storage, and certain heavily-advertised S4 features are missing.

Samsung's Mini may be first to market, but it'll soon be joined by the HTC One Mini and (probably) Motorola's rumored Droid Mini, among others. So is the this device worthy of the premium brand it's been gifted, or is it just a jumped-up mid-level phone? Find out after the break in our full-sized review of  the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini.

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4 years ago

Samsung Developer Conference to take place this October

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Samsung has unveiled its own developers conference, to be held in San Francisco, Calif. this October. According to the new teaser site at SamsungDevCon.com the conference will run from Oct. 27-29 at the Westin St. Francis Hotel on Union Square. It'll allow developers to "engage with industry leaders" and "collaborate with fellow developers," according to the official promotional materials. That's as specific as things are getting right now, but more info should be provided in the run up to the event. We have been told, however, that this isn't a mobile-only developer event. It'll span multiple product categories.

For the moment, interested devs can now pre-register for updates on the official site to learn when registration opens.

Source: SamsungDevCon.com

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4 years ago

Sony Xperia U now available for £125 in the UK

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A quick heads-up for anyone looking for a solid entry-level handset — Sony's Xperia U is now available for £124.99 from UK retailer Expansys. That'll get you a basic but capable Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) smartphone, with a 1GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM, a 3.5-inch WVGA display and a 5-megapixel Sony Exmor R camera.

It's not going to win any prizes for tech specs, but the Xperia U is a nicely-designed handset that features Sony's unique glowing "transparent element" as part of its design. In our review last May, we praised the performance and build quality, and since then it's been upgraded to ICS, giving it a new lease of life. If you're after a decent, inexpensive Android phone, we can certainly think of worse ways to spend your money.

Source: Expansys

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4 years ago

Start your week with the Greatest Android Podcast in the World!

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It started like most any other podcast, really. Shooting the breeze, recapping the week's Android news. Same as it ever was. But did you ever wonder what happens when breaking news hits while we're recording? That's what happened on Friday, and it was handled with the poise and grace you'd come to expect from us. That is to say, Alex took charge while the rest of us banged our heads against the table in excitement. Or something like that.

Anyhoo. Give our latest podcast a listen. Or, watch the video, if you prefer. And remember that you can do both directly from the official Android Central app!

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4 years ago

HTC reorganizes U.S. division, establishes new 'emerging devices' unit

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Jason Mackenzie back in charge of HTC America in latest executive shuffle

HTC is reorganizing its U.S. operations with the addition of a new unit focused on "emerging devices" and a new lead role for global sales boss Jason Mackenzie, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. An internal email from CEO Peter Chou obtained by the newspaper states, "Effective immediately, in addition to his current duties in supporting me with global corporate strategy, Jason Mackenzie will lead HTC America."

Mackenzie previously served as HTC's president of the Americas region prior to moving to a global marketing and sales-focused position. Last November he moved to his present role as President of Global Sales.

The email goes on, "Mike Woodward will lead Emerging Devices, a newly established business unit that will focus on innovative new HTC products and global distribution strategies." The WSJ says there's no specific information on precisely what the emerging devices unit will focus on, but the name suggests a possible expansion into other product categories for HTC.

The latest executive reshuffle follows several high-profile departures at the Taiwanese manufacturer, including former EMEA President Florian Seiche, Asia CEO Lennard Hoornik and Chief Product Officer Kouji Kodera. The company's Q2 financials showed a modest improvement upon the dismal previous quarter, aided by the high-profile HTC One launch, however year-on-year profits fell 83 percent.

Whatever the new "emerging devices" unit eventually comes up with, HTC's immediate future is focused on smartphones. The company recently announced a smaller, less expensive version of its flagship device, the HTC One Mini, and Android Central understands that a larger version with a faster CPU -- the HTC One "Max" -- is to follow in September.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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4 years ago

From the Editor's Desk: Perhaps the hyphen is the source of evil?

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So much for a slow summer, eh? We've got two events on the books next week, the Moto X dropping the week after, and we're starting to plan for IFA in Berlin the first week of September. So let's keep things short this week, shall we?

  • So Jay-Z is now Jay Z. Will losing the hyphen sap his power?
  • I was sad to see Rolling Stone hop on the "ZOMG THE JAY Z APP IS EVIL" bandwagon. "IT NEEDS FULL NETWORK ACCESS." Yes, Rolling Stone. It needs full network access. Because it connects to the Internet. Just like your app. Rolling Stone was hardly the only offender here, though.
  • More interesting is that the "Magna Carta Holy Grail" app has since been quietly pulled from Google Play. It's possible that was in the works from the start, but I doubt it.
  • What's the consensus on the album? I'm not enough of a hip-hop fan to intelligently weigh in, though I have listened to the record a couple times.
  • The more I think about it, the more any sort of Nexus Q successor or whatever Google's living-room play is must include Amazon Instant Video. Otherwise I'll be sending my screaming toddler to Mountain View to rain fire and brimstone and more whining and crying than one father can stand. Girl's gotta have her Dora.
  • I'm curious to see how much not having optical image stabilization will affect how much I like/use the HTC One Mini. NFC, Snapdragon 400 and a 720p display I'll probably be OK with.
  • Work continues on the official Android Central App. I think for the next release we'll play with Google's staged rollouts, just to see what it's like on the back end. 
  • Interesting note: A little less than a week after we pushed out v1.3 (to the beta group first, and to everyone a couple days later), nearly 80 percent have updated. To the 689 people who are still on the very first version we published, we considerately ask, "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?"
  • Holy crap.
  • Only one mistaken Tweet on Sunday after Phil Mickelson won the British Open. Hell of a round from Lefty. (Yes, I'm in his camp.) I didn't get to watch it live, though, as I took advantage of the one hour it didn't rain this weekend to mow the lawn. Listened to it on the Sirius XM app, though, and I dare say the commentators there made it pretty damn fun.
  • I'm at home this week with family obligations (wish @snickinson a speedy continued recovery from a kitchen mishap, if you'd like), but we'll still be in full effect at Tuesday's Verizon event in New York City, and Wednesday's "Breakfast with Sundar" in San Francisco, where we should get a look at the new Nexus 7 and Android 4.3.

And with that, let's get to work.

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4 years ago

New Nexus 7 appears in Best Buy circular

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Best Buy ad confirms $230 price tag and 1920 x 1200 display

Everyone is excited about the coming Nexus 7 sequel, even Best Buy by the looks of this sales circular. We don't get a very good press image of the upcoming tablet, but we've seen that already so we can focus on the details instead. This ad mentions a 1920 x 1200 screen, 16GB of storage, and the same $230 price we reported last week.

It's worth noting that it also says available Tuesday, but we have to remember there is a Tuesday in every week. This doesn't necessarily mean the day after tomorrow, and likely refers to Tuesday July 30, which is a few days after Google's big event in California coming this week. Without knowing the exact distribution date of this flyer, there is a bit of speculation involved.

We're ready, and an appearance at Best Buy on release may mean a little less frustration than ordering from Google Play. We'll know in just a few days.

Source: +Fábio Santos

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4 years ago

The new Nexus 7 leaks again, looks familiar

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Leaked press render confirms earlier pictures and video of pre-production unit

Another leak from @evleaks shows the new Nexus 7 in a detailed press render, and the image confirms our earlier exclusive pictures and video of the coming tablet. The matte finish back with the Nexus logo in a landscape format, as well as the large rear camera opening are on board. If you have a good eye, you can also see the notification light on the bottom bezel around in the front.

We're absolutely expecting to hear and see everything there is to know about the Nexus 7 sequel this coming Wednesday (July 24) where Android head Sundar Pichai has a breakfast event planned for the press. We'll be there, and be bringing you all the news live as it happens. For now, bask in the Nexus glory this press render delivers.

Source: @evleaks

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4 years ago

AOKP Milestone 2 now available to the masses

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44 devices receive the second major Android 4.2.2-based AOKP release

A little more than 3 months after its first Android 4.2.2-based milestone, the ever-growing-in-popularity custom ROM AOKP gets its second stable release, Milestone 2. The Android Open Kang Project ROM is now available on 44 different devices, including new devices such as variants of the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy Note 2, and Sony Xperia. Notable new features include:

  • AOKP Ribbon
  • Permission management
  • Dark AOKP
  • mGerrit – check our latest changes anytime
  • Persistence support – keep DPI/hosts settings between wipes
  • Quick Torch on Lockscreen
  • HDR mode in AOSP Camera (does not work on every device)
  • Few new Toggles – StayAwake, Custom, Sleep, Reboot, etc.
  • Superuser from Koush

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4 years ago

Moto X for AT&T pictures, benchmarks and specs revealed

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Solid but mid-range specs found under familiar black casing with a curved back

As we said when the first press renders of the Moto X hit the web, the leaks are just going to keep coming as we get closer and closer to its official reveal on August 1st. This time by way of the folks at AndroidPolice, we have pictures of the Moto X variant for AT&T (aka XT1058 or "ghost") with a whole breakdown of purported specs and benchmarks. On the outside everything looks to be in order along with previous leaks and renders, so the important part is what the diagnostics and FCC filings obtained by the site show of the internals:

  • Snapdragon S4 Pro MSM8960DT processor, clocked at 1.7GHz
  • 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage, no SDcard slot
  • 720x1280 4.7-inch display (minus a few pixels for the on-screen buttons)
  • 10.5MP rear and 2.1MP front-facing camera
  • 2200mAh non-removable battery

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4 years ago

T-Mobile offers free Lookout Premium subscriptions for Asurion PHP and Jump! customers

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New partnership will help keep your personal data, and your phone, a little safer.

Lookout and T-Mobile have a special treat for customers who elect to purchase Asurion PHP (Premium Handset Protection) or enroll in T-Mobile's new Jump! program -- a free subscription to Lookout's premium features. 

If you're enrolled in the Asurion program, or have signed up for Jump!, and a current Lookout user, you should soon be getting an email about the new promotion telling you a little more information. The gist of it all is that in addition to the antivirus, find-my-phone and backup and restore options offered in the free version of Lookout, you'll also have access to photo backup, remote lock and wipe, Safe Browsing, and Lookout's privacy advisor.

This is very much like the partnership between US Cellular and NQ Mobile, and any trend that helps people keep their phones and personal data more safe is a very good thing -- we hope it continues.

These tools are pretty useful, and Lookout has a long history with Android. You may or may not find the antivirus features useful, but the monitoring ans security features are great to have. Look for your email soon!

Source: Lookout. Thanks, Jimmy!

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4 years ago

NVIDIA Shield now shipping July 31

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NVIDIA this morning announced that Shield -- its handheld, Android-based gaming system -- will ship on July 31, a little more than a month late. Shield originally was to ship June 27, but an unspecified "mechanical issue" with a "third-party component" pushed the launch into July.

Shield, which is one of the first devices to use NVIDIA's new Tegra 4 system on a chip, is a mashup of console-style controller with a 5-inch touchscreen, running a relatively stock version of Android. It's mostly targeted toward hardcore gamers, but the move from $349 to $299 may open up that market somewhat.

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4 years ago

Nemesis: Something new is coming from CyanogenMod

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Speculation runs from a new set of customizations for the CM everyone knows and loves (possible), to AOSP for the iPhone (unlikely),  to a new custom ROM based on TouchWiz (wut?). The few people that know aren't saying.

We know it's something new, and it's coming. Good things often come to those who wait. 

Fill the comments with your guesses. 

Via: +CyanogenMod

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4 years ago

LG Enact revealed as another mid-range LTE handset for Verizon

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Another device with uninspired design and LTE to fill out Verizon's end-of-year lineup

Verizon and LG have had a steady relationship of releasing mid-range devices to fill out its smart phone portfolio, and it looks like the LG Enact will be the latest in the series. Following in the footsteps of devices like the Lucid, Spectrum and Revolution, the Enact (aka VS890) looks to have a moderate screen size, four capacitive buttons (yes, menu button included) and typical branding in all the right places.

The interface looks to be the same as other recent LG phones, and considering that Chrome is highlighted as an app on the home screen we're likely looking at Android 4.1 or above loaded on the Enact. Look for this one to hit Verizon by the end of the year at a low price point on-contract.

Source: @evleaks

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