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4 years ago

Captain Clumsy is a fun and free time-waster game

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Anyone with time to kill or a public transit daily commute can always find use for a quality one-handed casual game, and Captain Clumsy fits the bill. The premise of this game is basic -- and purposefully so -- as a "falling" style game with simple controls. You're a clumsy pirate (you would be too with 2 hook hands) trying to steal his booty back from the angry gulls that are holding it captive. Your character barrels down through pirate-themed levels, collecting coins and avoiding the bad gulls along the way. The controls are simple -- tap on the left of the screen to go left, right to go right -- and that's it! It's easy to pick up and play casually, but if you want to do well you have to put some time and effort into it. The game keeps you entertained regardless, with a fun soundtrack and gameplay sound effects.

The game follows the "free to play" with in-app purchases model (or "freemium," if you prefer,) which many games are going nowadays. You can play through the whole game without spending any money, but if you get stuck on a certain level or want to progress quickly, you can pay for power-ups in the store. Purchases of "coins" range from $0.99 to $14.99 for general purchases, and there are some specific perks you can buy too. There are still ads in the game -- both banner ads at the bottom of the screen and post-level full page ads for other games -- but once you make a single purchase in the store they go away. It still would be nice to have an up-front paid version of the game to not have ads from the start, but we understand this goes against the free-to-play nature of it.

If you need a fun time-waster that appeals to a whole range of ages and skill levels, Captain Clumsy is definitely worth your time to check out. And as a free to play title, you can't go wrong with trying it out. Stick around after the break to see the developer's trailer for the game, and head to the link at the top of this post to grab it from the Play Store.

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4 years ago

Samsung 'Galaxy Tab 3' devices said to be in the works along with mystery tab

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Last week brought news of a possible 8-inch Galaxy Note tablet coming at Mobile World Congress; today we have more details of more future Samsung tablets from the same source. Samsung fansite SamMobile reports via “Korean insiders” that the company will soon launch a new line of Galaxy Tabs, including a possible 7 and 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab 3 (codenamed “Santos”), and a new mystery tablet known only as “Roma.”

Exact hardware specs for the Galaxy Tab 3 line are uncertain, but SamMobile says the Tab 3 devices will likely come with a 5-megapixel camera, and be available in Wifi and Wifi/3G configurations. So no major surprises there, and we’d fully expect to see these new tablets make their debut at Mobile World Congress in late February.

But the most interesting part of today’s report concerns the tablet codenamed “Roma,” a high-end tab which apparently carries the product number GT-P8200. That’s noteworthy because it’s just a stone’s throw away from the Nexus 10’s GT-P8110. Samsung’s usually pretty deliberate with its model numbers, so we might speculate that this “Roma” device could sport similar specs to the Samsung-built Nexus tablet. Question is, what separates it from the 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab 3?

As with the Galaxy Tab 3 series, the “Roma” is said to be slated for release sometime in the first half of the year in 16GB and 32GB flavors. Like the Nexus 10, it will apparently feature a 5MP rear camera.

Remember we’ll be live at Mobile World Congress next month to bring you full coverage of whatever new tablets Samsung announces.

Source: SamMobile

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4 years ago

NFC-capable Galaxy S3 Mini launching this month

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If you'd wanted to pick up a Galaxy S3 Mini, but had found your desire for the miniature smartphone soured by its lack of NFC support, then Samsung's got you covered. A new, NFC-capable version of the S3 Mini will launch in the UK starting at the end of the month, the manufacturer revealed in a press release this morning.

Besides the inclusion of NFC, giving the S3 Mini support for Samsung's "S Beam" NFC-based file-sharing capability, the S3 Mini with NFC is the same as its near-field-communicationless sibling. That is to say you're looking at a 4-inch device with a WVGA (800x480) SuperAMOLED display, a 1GHz dual-core CPU, 1GB of RAM and TouchWiz'd Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

Pricing has yet to be officially announced, but Samsung says the S3 Mini with NFC will launch across major UK carriers and retailers from the end of January. More info in the presser after the break.

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4 years ago

Fresh HTC 'M7' images emerge showing new version of Sense

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We’ve seen a few renders claiming to show HTC’s next flagship Android phone of late -- first an image based on an on-device animation, then another mock-up render did the rounds on Twitter and elsewhere over the weekend. These latest images, however, could be the most accurate yet.

Today’s shots come from Android Police, which received them via an anonymous tipster claiming to have access to HTC’s next big thing, a phone currently known only by the codename “M7.” Based on the images, the device looks to share many design cues with the Windows Phone 8X and Droid DNA -- a primarily squarish design, with rounded corners and a rounded back. Interestingly, it seems HTC has swapped the location of the home and task switching button on this device -- home is now on the far right, and task-switching now lives in the middle.

Alongside these photos, screenshots from the device show what’s said to be HTC Sense 5.0, the next version of HTC’s Android UI. If this is an accurate representation of what’s next from HTC, 2013’s version of Sense certainly looks more minimalist than earlier iterations -- the bright colors and faux 3D effects that’ve previously characterized Sense are nowhere to be seen here. There are new icons, new widgets, and what seems to be predetermined widget areas for social media updates, news and tutorials. The UI is also watermarked with “HTC Confidential” and a unique code, and Sense and Android versions marked as “protected.” Both are hallmarks of pre-release HTC software.

On the whole, these images look pretty promising. But we still have no way of knowing where in the prototyping process this device lies, and how close it is to the finished product. Certain anomalies, like the excessive bezel, derivative design and lack of regulatory info on the back suggest that the finished product might look a little different. Nevertheless, it’s our best indication yet as to what might be next from HTC. We’ll likely find out more at Mobile World Congress 2013, where the company is expected to officially announce the M7.

Source: Android Police

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4 years ago

CyanogenMod 10.1 'M-Series' builds now available for select devices

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A handful of select devices are getting CyanogenMod 10.1 "M-Series" builds starting today. These builds are meant to be released less frequently, and are considered stable for daily use. You can think of M-Series builds as a step above nightly builds, which often have many bugs. The following devices are supported for now:

The CyanogenMod team says in its post that it is on-track for a stable release of 10.1 soon, and these M-Series builds are a good step in the right direction. If you have one of the above listed devices and are interested in the new builds, head to the source link below and grab your downloads.

Source: Cyanogenmod

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4 years ago

Sony announces the quad-core, 10-inch Tablet Z

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Sony Mobile has announced the Android 4.1-powered Xperia Tablet Z, right as we expected them to do so. The specs also match last week's rumors, with a few extra surprises thrown in. The Tablet Z comes equipped with a 10.1-inch WUXGA (1920 x 1200) display complete with the Mobile Bravia Engine 2, 2 GB of RAM, 32 GB of on device storage, a microSD card slot, NFC, and an 8.1 MP Exmor R camera. Providing the juice for all this is the Qualcomm quad-core APQ8064 processor clocked at 1.5 GHz, with an LTE modem on board for the ride. As rumored, the Tablet Z is also extremely thin (6.9 mm) as well as water and dust proof like it's slightly smaller cousin the Xperia Z.

What we don't know is pricing and availability. Hopefully we get word at Mobile World Congress next month if not earlier. We'll keep an eye out and let you know when Sony has anything further to tell us all. We've got a picture of the rear after the break.

Source: Sony Mobile (Japan)

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4 years ago

Samsung rumored to be launching enormous smartphone with ridiculous name in Europe

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Leak season continues, and we're back with Samsung this time around. Sammobile, a usually reliable source of all things Samsung, claims to have received word of a 5.8 inch smartphone from the Korean OEM destined for Europe. The reported name is, ready for this? The Samsung Galaxy Fonblet. 

The device is said to be loosely based around the Samsung Galaxy Player 5.8 PMP that was launched in Korea, only with cellular capabilities. The Galaxy Player 5.8 has a qHD display, and a 3MP rear camera. The bad news is that Sammobile claims the Fonblet is supposed to have the same display. So we're not looking at a high-end, Note 2 beating device. Additionally, it's expected to have dual-sim capabilities -- suggesting emerging European markets might be the target here -- and will come in white. Feels a lot like parts recycling though, if we're honest. 

Source: Sammobile

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4 years ago

The best alarm clock apps for Android

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The days of the standalone bedside alarm clock are numbered, with the simple inclusion of a “clock” app on every smartphone taking over. But there are so many options out there, why settle for the app pre-loaded on your phone? Your alarm doesn't just have to be a bland beeping sound that makes you want to throw your phone across the room. Read on after the break and see the best alarm clock apps available for your device.

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4 years ago

The week in international Android news - Jan. 20, 2013

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We've hit the ground running after CES, with a wealth of Android news from around the world. And although that show gave us plenty of new devices to prepare for, the focus of much of this week's news was rumored devices expected to emerge in the months ahead. (Our money's on most of these being unveiled at Mobile World Congress in late February, by the way.)

Let's start by breaking down some of the rumored devices, then we'll get to some of the other international stories to break this week...

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4 years ago

From the Editor's Desk: Fitness month cometh

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I have absolutely no idea how it happened, but January is quickly coming to close. And that means February -- and Mobile Nations Fitness Month -- is nearly upon us. Last year was a dismal failure. OK, maybe not "dismal" -- I'm not sure I failed at it anymore than I've failed at anything else I didn't actually really do. We're going to give it another shot this year, never mind that I'll be on the road at least two weeks of an already short month.

Last year I tried a Fitbit. But that damned little pedometer was just too damned little. I have no idea where it went. So this year I'm going to try a Nike Fuel Band. I haven't warn a watch in years -- sitting in front of a computer all day, with clocks on walls and a smartphone in my pocket made strapping a timepiece on my arm a redundant proposition. So this semi-rigid bracelet has taken some getting used to, and it's extremely annoying when trying to type on a laptop. Maybe that says more about my typing posture. I dunno.

We still don't have a proper Android app for the Fuel Band. But Nike recently released some APIs, so let's hope apps like Endomondo take advantage of them.

Anyhoo. Mobile Nations Fitness Month is right around the corner. Hopefully I'll do a little better with it this year. And hopefully a few of you will come along for the ride.

And now, a few quick thoughts to start the week.

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4 years ago

Press for Android updated with performance fixes

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Popular Google Reader app Press has been updated with new performance improvements, as well as various bug fixes. The second update for the app brings it up to version 1.1.1, and since updating we're noticing that the app does seem a good bit nippier -- especially when syncing large numbers of unread articles.

If you'd previously tried out Press but had been put off by issues with speed and responsiveness, now might be the chance to give it another try. You can find the download link above; as always, it costs $1.99 and is limited those running Android 4.0 and above. Existing users can update by heading to the "My Apps" section in the Google Play Store app.

More: Press: Google Reader done right, or just different?

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4 years ago

Capture the essence of the Ubuntu lockscreen with Ubuntu Live Wallpaper

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I don't use live wallpapers traditionally. I find that too often there's a trade off in device performance and or battery life to make it worthwhile. I've made an exception to try this one out, and I'm pretty happy with it. Ubuntu Live Wallpaper tries to capture some of the feel of that great looking lockscreen on Ubuntu for Phones, in a live wallpaper for your Android device. And, while it isn't an exact replica, it's pretty close, and looks great. Currently still in beta, the developers describe it as their "hobby." But for a beta product, it's very well done. 

One of my biggest annoyances with live wallpapers as I mentioned is performance and battery life issues. Even on high end devices, too often things become jerky and the battery life has just been sucked dry. So far, on the Nexus 4 at least, this hasn't been the case with Ubuntu Live Wallpaper. Battery life doesn't seem to be any less than usual, and scrolling through the homescreens -- in my case with Action Launcher -- is as smooth and speedy as ever. 

There's a couple of features baked in too worth mentioning, and some due to arrive in future updates. A double tap anywhere on the wallpaper brings up the option to display either time, or remaining battery percentage. Coming in the future will be the ability to switch between 12 and 24 hour clocks, repositioning the circle, scaling and color change. 

Remember though that this is still a beta product, and the developers are all to aware of performance issues affecting some devices. But, it's free, and worth a look if you're looking for a little flavor of Ubuntu for Phones without getting too deep. You'll find it in the Play Store at the link above, and click on past the break for some screenshots. 

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4 years ago

Opera bringing the Ice browser to Android and iOS

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Opera is said to be bringing a new WebKit based browser to Android and iOS. Named "Ice", it presents a radical departure from what we're used to seeing with the stock Android Browser, Chrome, or even Safari. Shown off in an internal meeting right before Christmas, the folks at Pocket-lint got their hands on a copy and now we all can have a look.

Besides the UI, which we'll get back to in a moment, it's important to recognize that "Ice" won;t be using the same Presto rendering platform that Opera's current Android apps use. With Ice, Opera has moved to WebKit, the same engine that Chrome and Safari, as well as the stock Android browser and all the custom browsers in Google Play, are using. This should give Ice an edge, as most mobile pages and web apps are designed with WebKit in mind.

The new Opera Ice browser will be based around hiding the technology as much as possible and embracing rich applications. It will ditch all buttons and instead use gestures to control key elements like forwards and backwards. "This is a full touch and tablet-focused browser," said the product manager in the video we've seen. "Most are taking a PC browser and squishing [it] into a tablet, or they are taking a mobile browser and blowing it up to fill the space."

Yes, the UI looks very different. I'm not sure how I feel about "hiding technology" from the end user in favor of gestures and big icons, but I'll have to give the finished product a look before a final judgment.

Ice is not set to replace Opera mini, the small browser that compresses data to save time and bandwidth, but we expect that it may push the standard Opera Mobile for Android browser into retirement. Word is we'll know more at Mobile World Congress, which is coming right around the corner. We'll be there, and keep an eye out.

Source: Pocket-lint

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4 years ago

Celebrate the opening hockey weekend with NHL 2013 Live Wallpaper

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After a lengthy lockout, the NHL season is finally starting this weekend. If you’re a puck head like I am, you’re going to want to check out the NHL 2013 Live Wallpaper app. Whether you want to show support for your team or just give your devices a little hockey makeover, this app is for you.

The initial download is free. But if you want it to do anything more, you’re going to have to pay for add-ons within the app. We're not really keen on this sort of business model ourselves, but it is what it is. Here are the prices:

  • Live wallpaper only: $2.49 (1 team)
  • Score clock only: $1.49
  • Ringtone only: $0.99
  • All Access Pass (unlocks everything): $6.99

The live wallpapers have an optional interactive puck, Winter Classic Mode,  arena ticker, game events and sounds. You can also customize the flag style and what kind of arena you would like to see, whether it be a 2013 version or an older version from last year.

So whether or not you root for the Rangers, Penguins, Capitals or Sabres, the app has content to help you show off your fandom.

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4 years ago

Apps of the Week: NHL Gamecenter, Aldiko Sync, Candy Crush Saga and more!

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The app picks just keep on coming. Straight from the Android Central writers to you, the best apps we're using for the previous week are listed here. We've got some productivity tools and a few fun games for you to enjoy on your own phone or tablet this weekend.

Stick around after the break and see if our picks are up to par this week.

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