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4 years ago

Nexus 7 LTE factory images now available

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Nexus 7 LTE factory images now available

Nexus 7

Nexus 7

If you're one of the lucky few Nexus 7 owners with the new LTE version, you can now safely restore your tablet back to the factory firmware using official images from Google. Images for the Nexus 7 with mobile data — codenamed "razorg" — have been posted on the Google Developers site, giving N7 LTE owners who've tinkered around with their devices an easy route back to stock Android 4.3, build JLS36C.

Hit the link below to grab the images.

Download: Google Developers

4 years ago

UK to experiment with mobile emergency alerts

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UK to experiment with mobile emergency alerts

Emergency!

Emergency!

British government working with O2, Vodafone and EE to test alerts

The UK could join the U.S. with a nationwide mobile emergency alert system if trials of the technology are successful. BBC News reports that trials are to take place in Easingwold, in North Yorkshire, Leiston, in Suffolk, and Glasgow city centre, with up to 50,000 people receiving emergency notifications. Three of the four major mobile networks — O2, EE and Vodafone — are participating in the pilot, the broadcaster reports.

Both traditional SMS messages and cell broadcast messages will be tested as part of the trial, which is expected to begin later this month and run through until November. A report in 2014 will then determine whether the system should be implemented nationwide, and if so what form it should take.

Countries already using mobile emergency alerts include the U.S., Australia and the Netherlands, and other areas prone to natural disasters are in the process of implementing similar systems. Stateside, emergency alerts have been used to inform the public of events like prison escapes, disappearances and severe weather since late 2011.

Source: BBC News

4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Gear up for pre-order from AT&T, priced $299

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Samsung Galaxy Gear up for pre-order from AT&T, priced $299

Galaxy Gear

Galaxy Gear

Black and white color options only at present

AT&T is now listing Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch for pre-order with a $299 price tag. At launch, the watch will only support the upcoming Galaxy Note 3, with other Samsung phones getting support through future software updates. Currently the Gear is available in black and white colors from ATT.com, and will ship on Oct. 1 along with the supporting phone.

The Galaxy Gear is being promoted as a companion device for the Note 3, allowing owners to make calls, view messages and even take photos (using the built-in 1.9-megapixel camera) without removing the phone from their pockets. It's the first serious Android smartwatch to emerge, however its relatively high price tag and Samsung handset requirement will its appeal at launch. If you're planning on picking one up on launch day, leave a comment and let us know.

Pre-order: AT&T

4 years ago

Sony Xperia Z1 now in stock at UK retailers

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Sony Xperia Z1 now in stock at UK retailers

Xperia Z1

Xperia Z1

Right on schedule, the first Sony Xperia Z1 stock has started to arrive at independent UK retailers, with Clove Technology and Digital Phone Co both listing the device for sale. SIM-free prices are in the £550-560 range, so you'll certainly pay a premium for the Z1's high-end internals, which include a Snapdragon 800 quad-core CPU and 20.7-megapixel camera with Sony G lens.

If you're planning on picking up an Xperia Z1 in the UK, hit the comments and let us know. If you're still on the fence, you can check out our hands-on feature from IFA for a closer look at the phone.

Source: Clove, Digital Phone Co; via: Xperia Blog

4 years ago

ASUS unveils new Padfone Infinity with updated internals and design

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ASUS unveils new Padfone Infinity with updated internals and design

ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013)
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013)
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).
ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013).

ASUS Padfone Infinity (late 2013)

Snapdragon 800 CPU and new camera tricks among features of the 'new' ASUS Padfone Infinity

Following on from its recent product line refresh at IFA, Taiwanese manufacturer ASUS has taken the wraps off a revamped dockable handset, in the form of the "new" Padfone Infinity. A refreshed version of the handset we first saw at Mobile World Congress, the new Padfone packs a 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, microSD expandability and a tweaked industrial design, featuring a "diamond-cut" aluminum back.

The tablet-dockable phone features the same 13-megapixel, f/2.0 camera as the original, but ASUS is introducing a new ability it's calling PixelMaster, which uses a pixel binning-like feature to produce a clearer 3-megapixel image from the 13-megapixel sensor.

On the software side, the new Padfone Infinity runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and ASUS's latest UI, which we saw on its latest products in Berlin a couple of weeks ago. It's still pretty close to vanilla Android, but tweaks to the menus, notification shade and icons give it its own unique appearance without straying too far from Google's vision of Android.

Engadget reports that the new Padfone Infinity will sell for the equivalent of $640 for the handset alone, while the tablet will run around $240. Got an old Padfone Infinity tablet dock? Fear not, you'll be able to use your old dock with the new phone.

Source: Engadget

4 years ago

Vector 11: Benedict Evans on the value of cheap phones

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Vector 11: Benedict Evans on the value of cheap phones

Android Central

Android Central

Strategy analyst Benedict Evans joins Rene to talk about Apple's iPhone 5c pricing, how it compares to low-cost Android and Windows Phone devices, and the relative value of platforms.

4 years ago

Galaxy Tab 3 may be getting multi-user support in a future update

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Galaxy Tab 3 may be getting multi-user support in a future update

Galaxy Tab 3

Galaxy Tab 3

Test firmware shows Samsung's take on multi-user support

Though the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 models — both the 8.0-inch version and the 10.1-incher — launched with Android 4.2.2, they did not have the multi-user account support that Google has added to tablets. If the test firmware that SamMobile has seen a peek of ends up getting released to the tablets, that looks like it's going to change.

There's no word on what other changes may be in any future update, or if it will involve any Android version bump.

Folks are pretty confident that we'll see this update in the near future. Multi-user support is a great feature to have on a tablet, and we hope Samsung has figured out a way to do it that fits their take on Android.

Source: SamMobile. Thanks, B!

4 years ago

Google Voice is improving voicemail security starting Oct. 1

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Google Voice is improving voicemail security starting Oct. 1

Google Voice
Google Voice Security Message

Google Voice

Now more difficult to access voicemail from a new number; new 10 digit PIN option

Folks who happen to check their Google Voice inboxes on the web today will be greeted with a handy tip that Google is improving voicemail box security in a couple of weeks. Starting on October 1st, Google Voice users who wish to call their own number to access voicemail messages will have to call from one of their verified forwarding numbers already on record.

If you happen to call from a number that isn't already set up, you will have to verify that you are the account holder by entering a registered forwarding number before also entering your PIN code. Furthering the layers of security, Google is expanding PIN options to let you enter up to 10 digits, up from the previous 4.

4 years ago

Nexus 4 16GB now out of stock on Google Play, too

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Nexus 4 16GB now out of stock on Google Play, too

Nexus 4

Nexus 4

Third-party retailers still selling the device, but no indication of how long stock will hold

Update: The Verge is reporting via a "trusted source" that this is the end of the road for the Nexus 4 in the U.S., and that no new N4 stock will be arriving.

Original story: After seeing the 8GB version of the Nexus 4 go out of stock on Google Play a mere two weeks ago, we have to say it isn't completely surprising that the 16GB version has just gone out of stock today as well. Now normally we wouldn't give too much thought to a device going out of stock on the Play Store — the Nexus 4 has a pretty shaky history of availability — but the timing here is more interesting than usual.

If you recall back to our original coverage of the 8GB model going out of stock, sources familiar with the situation indicated that it would not be restocked in the Play Store, letting the 16GB live on as the only model. Now with both variants unavailable from Google Play, we have to think its a little late in this device's life cycle to be refreshing the inventory levels.

Now of course if you're still looking to get your hands on a Nexus 4 there are plenty of options out there. Naturally, third-party retailers still have both capacities in stock in many cases — T-Mobile will even sell you one still. But the device going out of stock (potentially for good) from Google directly likely hints to something coming to take its place soon.

4 years ago

BBM for Android won't be exclusive to Samsung devices after all

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BBM for Android won't be exclusive to Samsung devices after all

BBM for Android

BBM for Android

No operator or manufacturer will have exclusive access to the messaging platform when it comes to Android

It seems as though some communication lines may have gotten crossed today when Samsung Mobile Nigeria seemed to imply that it would have a three-month exclusivity on BlackBerry's upcoming launch of BBM on Android. After hearing from an official Samsung Twitter account indicating that this was the case and reaching out to the companies, we've heard back directly from BlackBerry with the following statement:

The tweet, though very exciting, is incorrect ... I want to clarify that no one will have an exclusive on offering BBM. We’ll be bringing the app to Android and iPhone users across the globe soon.

Now this doesn't give us any official confirmation for when exactly we can get our hands on BBM, but it does let us know that no particular operator or manufacturer will have it exclusively locked up.

4 years ago

Google Drive update changes up interface elements, adds settings and features

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Google Drive update changes up interface elements, adds settings and features

Google Drive

Google Drive

Holo light, new spreadsheet and scan options introduced

Word from a few days ago tipped that a Google Drive update began rolling out to devices with several new features, and now it seems that the update is hitting a wide number of devices. Although at first glance the update's changelog of "Bug fixes and other improvements" may throw you off, there are actually quite a few changes in the latest version.

First and most noticeable is the move to a "holo light" theme from "holo dark," which will make the app extremely familiar to those who use the latest versions of Gmail. Next on the main screen you'll notice a new bottom action bar with options to upload, create and scan, where the "create" option gives you a familiar menu to make new folders, documents and spreadsheets. This new bottom bar replaces the old plus button in the top action bar, and hides when you scroll down your documents list.

You'll also find a good grouping of new features in the spreadsheet editor for merging and locking cells, and new options to improve your new scans. There are small tweaks and improvements across the entire app, leading to what seems like an improved experience all-around for us. You can grab the latest version from the Play Store link above.

4 years ago

LG-made Nexus device shows up in pictures, brief videos

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LG-made Nexus device shows up in pictures, brief videos

LG Nexus phone
LG Nexus phone
LG Nexus phone

LG Nexus phoneLG Nexus phone

Design characteristics match previous leaks, no new information revealed

A grouping of curious leaks from Google promotional videos and the FCC have people sniffing around for the next Nexus phone, and the latest leaks may give us the best look yet at the unreleased device. Pictures and videos obtained by 9to5Google show off a "Nexus" phone with very similar characteristics and design to what we've seen previously pass through the FCC as an LG-D820.

We get a good shot of the back and front, as well as a still of the boot animation — which looks oddly like the Google Play edition animation. The back plate looks to have a soft touch material and is rather blocky with curved top and bottom edges, a large camera pod in the top left and a Nexus logo running vertically along the back. Naturally there is an LG logo at the bottom under a "Not For Sale" etching.

This particular unit naturally looks much more final and finished than the earlier pictures from the FCC, but as we all know things can change drastically during pre-production and prototype stages. 

4 years ago

Samsung Mobile Nigeria says BBM hits Friday, has three-month exclusivity

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Samsung Mobile Nigeria says BBM hits Friday, has three-month exclusivity

BBM for Android

BBM for Android

Speaking of BBM for Android, Samsung Mobile Nigeria today tweeted that apparently BBM for Android will be available Friday — and that it'll be some sort of Samsung-exclusive, possibly for three months. 

If that's in fact true — we've got e-mails out to Samsung Mobile for more proper confirmation — that's a bummer for the cross-platform crowd, but a boon for Samsung.

4 years ago

Uber now lets you share your route and ETA with contacts

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Uber now lets you share your route and ETA with contacts

Uber

Uber

Let your friends know you're running late and how you're arriving

Black car and taxi service Uber is updating its apps today with a great new feature that lets you share your location and route information with any contact. Once you've called for an Uber pickup, you can use the app to enter your destination and then share the route and estimated travel time to any contact in your phone. The app calculates how long it expects the driver to take, and sends it off without any additional calculations on your part.

Although Uber isn't available in all major cities in the US just yet, it is expanding quickly. If it is available where you live, you may just want to have the Uber app installed the next time you need to call a car. You can grab a download from the Play Store link above.

4 years ago

Announcing the 'Weekly Photo Contest: Back to school' winners!

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Announcing the 'Weekly Photo Contest: Back to school' winners!

Photo Contest Prizes
Weekly Photo Contest entry
Weekly Photo Contest entry

Photo Contest Prizes

Two lucky winners have some great devices on the way to their houses

It's been a few weeks since we announced that we were running a very special "Back to school" photo contest with some big prizes, and now it's time to announce the winners. After a few weeks, we had hundreds of entries across 22 pages in a forums post full of great pictures, but when it came down to it we had to pick just two.

Come take a look at the two winning pictures after the break.

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