Headlines

4 years ago

Sphero is Amazon's Deal of the Day, on sale for $84.99

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You all know Sphero, the robotic ball that is controlled via your Android phone. If you've been curious about one of these but were hesitant about the price tag, you can get it discounted today for $84.99, marked down from $129.99, as it's Amazon's Deal of the Day.

As mentioned above, Sphero is a ball that is controlled with your mobile device, Android or iOS. There are many apps that you can download from Google Play to allow you to control your Sphero in a different way or play games.

At a price of $129, many were hesitant to commit to the purchase. A $50 discount is attractive and will likely lure many more to try the robotic ball. How about you guys, at this price, are you more likely to buy a Sphero?

Source: Amazon

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4 years ago

Get dedicated Tapatalk apps for all the Mobile Nations forums!

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Good news, everyone! We now have dedicated Tapatalk apps for all of your favorite Mobile Nations sites. That's your fast-track ticket to the forums of Android Central, CrackBerry, iMore and WPCentral — and they're all available now in Google Play.

(And for those who have asked, yes, we'd love to get some iOS action going on, but — surprise, surprise — Apple rejects anything that has to do with Android Central. Go figure.)

Here's where to get your download on:

And as always, don't forget to check out the Official Android Central app, which also gives you full access to the blog side of things in addition to podcasts, forums, wallpapers and more!

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini now available at Three UK

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Free on a £26 a month deal, or £349.99 on pay-as-you-go

One of Samsung's newest members of the Galaxy S4 family, the Galaxy S4 Mini, is now available to purchase from Three UK. The S4 Mini can be had for no initial payment on a new, two-year, £26 and above contract, or can be purchased on Three's new pay-as-you-go tariff for an outright payment of £349.99. 

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4 years ago

Motorola 'Droid Ultra' spotted on Motorola site

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Thin, Kevlar-clad device mentioned on apparent placeholder site

If you listened to Android Central podcast 139 a couple of weeks back, you might've caught our own Phil Nickinson talking about the Motorola Droid Ultra, Droid Ultra Mini and Droid Ultra Maxx, a new line of Moto-built, Verizon-bound phones. The Ultra, according to our source, was to pack a 5-inch screen and be even thinner than the original Droid RAZR. Check out the clip below.

Today we've got some of the first signs that of the "Ultra" line's existence, in the form of what seems to be a placeholder page on Motorola.com. Under the subheading "Think Thin," the Droid Ultra is described thusly —

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4 years ago

AT&T expands LTE network with nearly three dozen new or improved locations

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As it seems to do on a nearly weekly basis, AT&T is rolling out new or improved LTE service to 35 new markets across the United States, with expansion to a handful of others.

That brings AT&T's nationwide total to 326 markets.

It's a pretty sizable list, so we're going to do it all after the break. But users with LTE-capable devices and the proper provisioning on their account should see new coverage in the following markets:

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4 years ago

HTC One 4.2.2 OTA appears for international users in Taiwan

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465MB update delivers Android 4.2.2 and brings the death of the dreaded black bar

A user with an international model HTC One in Taiwan just sent in some good news -- the 4.2.2 OTA has arrived for his phone. Nothing in the way of a change log is available from HTC just yet, but the update screen tells us a little bit. Besides the new API level that comes with 4.2.2, HTC has included:

  • Launcher bar enhancement
  • Widget panel rearrangement
  • New lock screen style and widget
  • Enhanced behavior of the home button
  • The death of the black bar
  • Battery percentage in the status bar
  • Quick settings
  • AE/AF enhancements in the camera

So far the only reports are coming from the Taiwan area, and I've been trying every trick I know to force anything on my developer edition. This follows the same trend we've seen before with the One X, where Taiwan and Singapore were the first to get the goods. 

There's no telling when we'll see carrier versions of the update, but knowing that HTC is finished with it should make everyone breathe a little easier. Hit the break for some screenshots of the new features.

Thanks, Alex!

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4 years ago

Follow the AC crew on Google+

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You can find the whole Android Central family on Google+

Pick up that Android phone in front of you, or fish it out of your pocket. Chances are the Google+ app is installed. Here's a great way to get the best use out of it -- follow AC and the whole crew on Google+. You'll stay abreast of everything that's fit to print about Android, and it's the best way to shoot the breeze with any of us. There is also plenty of other talk going on about all of the current events, because none of us are what you would call shy.

We'll make it easy, here's a orderly bullet point list:

Like our fearless leader Crackberry Kevin (find him on Google+ here) said in today's Talk Mobile segment, social networking can be a huge time sink. You might as well have a good time doing it. 

We'll see you there!

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4 years ago

Facebook sharing your phone number sucks, but you gave it to them willingly

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When you willingly give your data away, you lose control of where it goes once it's no longer in your hands

Last week we told you about a bug on Facebook, where the popular social network ended up sharing some personal information with your friends. There's some more talk about it again today, as Symantec has stated that "the first time you launch the Facebook application, even before logging in, your phone number will be sent over the Internet to Facebook servers. You do not need to provide your phone number, log in, initiate a specific action, or even need a Facebook account for this to happen."

The thing is, if you installed the Facebook app, you agreed to give them this information. It spells it out in simple terms, and forced you to agree to it before you could download the app.

This doesn't excuse Facebook for the latest privacy gaffe, but it does highlight the need to look at those permissions -- and understand them -- for each and every app you install. They are all there, and if you come across something you don't understand there are plenty of people to help you figure it out in the forums.

We're not saying the Android permissions system is perfect. But it is there, and we have nobody to blame but ourselves when we agree to something we end up not liking.

Update: People are asking about the pre-installed version of Facebook on their carrier and OEM branded phones. When you set up your phone, or first use the app, you're given a link to the full set of Facebook policies, including their data use policy. If what data is being collected is important to you, that's readily available right from your phone settings. On your first trip to the Google Play store, you'll be asked to update to the Google Play version, which again reviews all of the app permissions. This information is there, you only need to read it.

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4 years ago

Firefox OS launches in Spain while Android reaches 70% market share

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Is Firefox OS and their shockingly inexpensive entry point the key to a strong number three mobile OS? 

The ZTE Open officially launches in Spain July 2. It's the first available consumer version of a Firefox OS device, and the Internet is buzzing about its debut. With good reason -- the phone will sell for $90, and include $39 of prepaid airtime. That makes it a $51 dollar smartphone, and will be an easy sell for all those feature phone users out there. We're looking to get one, if only to satisfy my own curiosity.

Meanwhile, Android has reached a 70-percent share of the global smart phone market. Android is especially strong in Europe, right where the ZTE Open is launching. That's a big Goliath to Mozilla's David, and in a world of cheap prepaid Android phones can the fledgling Firefox OS compete? It's all going to come down to one thing -- the apps.

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4 years ago

Play CSR Racing and win a Nexus 7 tablet!

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Try out a different kind of racing game and win a new tablet to play it on in the process

CSR Racing isn't your standard racing game requiring lots of fine motor skills to steer and navigate a track. It instead focuses on building up your car collection by street drag racing, focusing on proper use of car upgrades, accelerating and shifting to win races. With a deep story line taking you through an RPG-like experience and high-quality graphics, there's a whole lot of content here to enjoy playing through.

Hang around after the break to take a better look at CSR Racing and learn how you could win a Nexus 7 in the process.

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4 years ago

Add special effects to your videos easily with FxGuru

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Spice up your videos with space debris, dinosaurs, falling pianos and more with this easy to use app

The video camera on your Android phone just became a lot more fun to use thanks to FxGuru. If you ever wanted to have a T-Rex crash your brother's Little League game, or drop a piano on your mother-in-law, or just weasel out of cutting the grass because a part of Skylab fell in the yard, now you can! OK, not really but it can look like it happened, and that's more fun than cleaning up after a T-Rex.

The app is easy to use. You pick the effect you want, hit the OK button, and start recording. There's an overlay on your screen of where the magic will happen so you know just how to keep things lined up. When you're done, you can select a filter and boost the audio, and it saved to an mp4 video right on your phone.

There are seven free effects included -- Breaking News, Birthday Bot, Dancing Droid, Piano Drop,Satellite Crash, UFO Shuttle and TNT Barrel -- and you can download plenty of others for 99-cents each or $4.69 for six in a pack. The free effects are limited to 480p recording, but the paid ones will allow HD recording.

I'm having entirely too much fun with this one. Hit the Google Play link above and check it out -- you will, too. Hit the break for an example (you knew we had to) and an assortment of screen shots.

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4 years ago

Google Glass update improves voice controls, adds full website viewing

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Glass sheds a few of its initial limitations with the latest update rolling out to Explorers now

We know not many people have Google Glass at this point so this may feel like rubbing salt in the wound, but Google Glass is receiving an update today to improve the experience in a few important areas. First up are voice controls, which are expanding to handle incoming and outgoing text messages, answering incoming calls and sharing directly with individuals by name all with voice-only commands. Adding to this expansion of communication, Google Glass can now interact with your entire Google Contacts list, rather than the previous ten favorite friends list before.

Additionally, and possibly most surprisingly, Google has included full web page viewing from Google Search results in Glass. Now after making a search, users can tap on a "View website" screen to be taken to a full view of the page where they can scroll up and down with two fingers on the touch pad or hold two fingers and move their head to pan around the page.

The update will be rolling out over the air for the lucky Google Glass users among us in the next couple of days.

Source: +Project Glass

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4 years ago

How to sign out of the new Skype 4.0 for Android

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Skype has done fine work with its new Version 4.0 on Android, bringing about some badly needed performance improvements as well as a redesign. But in doing so, it's buried the sign-out button, as well as the settings — two things that absolutely need to be in the top level of the user interface.

Here's how to get to them:

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4 years ago

Why should anybody care about your social status? - Talk Mobile

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Update. Check-in. Post. Poke. Tweet. Like. Pin. Upload. Filter. Share. Plus. The world of social networking is ever-evolving and ever-expanding. An outgrowth of our own in-person social interactions, online social networking has become a new facet of our human communication, often supplanting a good portion of that originating in-person interaction.

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