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4 years ago

Android 4.0 and higher nears 50-percent adoption, 2.3 still the largest share


Right on schedule, the Android Developers Dashboard has reported the share of devices running each version of Android as of February 4, 2013. These numbers are measured based on the number of users accessing Google Play within a 14 day period, which is a great indication of devices being actively used. As you can see in the chart above, Android 4.0 and higher is nearing the 50-percent mark, at 42.6-percent currently. Gingerbread is still holding down the top spot at 45.6-percent, but we're nearing the point where device running Gingerbread will be overtaken by versions with the new design language.

As you'll see in the graph after the break, the share of Gingerbread devices is slowly but surely decreasing, making way for a notably quick Jelly Bean advancement. Jelly Bean (both 4.1 and 4.2) total up to 13.6-percent of devices, surely helped by the success of the Nexus 7 and notable updates to popular devices like the Galaxy S3.

Source: Android Developers Dashboard

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4 years ago

Chicken Dynamo: tilt and fly through this fun side-scroller


Apparently chickens can fly, and we're glad they can in the new game Chicken Dynamo. Another entry into the casual side-scrolling category, Chicken Dynamo takes a proven gametype and adds some fun flare while keeping things simple. Similar to popular flying titles like Jetpack Joyride, this game offers gameplay that can be as simple or as challenging as you want to make it. 

Read along after the break to see more of what Chicken Dynamo has to offer.

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4 years ago

PSA: Nexus 4 factory images back online


Almost two months after they were mysteriously pulled from Google's online repository of Nexus factory images, the Nexus 4 stock images have reappeared on the site. These are full copies of the stock Nexus 4 Android 4.2.1 firmware which can be used to reset the device back to factory software if anything goes wrong.

The file's MD5 hash is the same as the earlier image, so it looks like nothing's changed. And obviously, it's the same version of Android running on just about every Nexus 4 at the moment -- Android 4.2.1, build JOP40D. Interestingly, the Nexus 4 hardware binaries required to build AOSP for the device are still missing from the Google Developers site.

In any case, if you want to grab the Nexus 4 factory image you can once again do so at the source link.

Source: Nexus Factory Images

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4 years ago

Ice Cream Sandwich finally rolling out on the HTC Thunderbolt


A week after it was confirmed, and a good six months or so since the first leak, Ice Cream Sandwich is pushing out for Verizon's HTC Thunderbolt. The update brings the 'Bolt up to Android 4.0.4 and HTC Sense 3.6, and weighs in at a little under 400MB. According to reports from the Android Central forums and elsewhere it's available now for download, so go get it! Head to Settings > About phone > Software update to see if your update is ready.

If you've stuck it out with the Thunderbolt, be sure to hit the comments let us know how you get on with this substantial software upgrade.

Source: Android Central forums

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4 years ago

AT&T turns on LTE in 5 more markets, including Norfolk and Virginia Beach


AT&T announced this morning that it has flipped the switch for LTE in more cities. The high speed 4G network is now available in:

  • Northwest, Georgia
  • Albany, Georgia
  • Cecil County, Maryland
  • Montgomery County, Pennsylvania
  • Norfolk, parts of Virginia Beach and Portsmouth, VA

Great news for everybody in these locales who can now experience the faster speeds.

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4 years ago

BlackBerry Android Runtime to be updated to Android 4.1, eventually


The Android Runtime for BlackBerry has been around for a while now, but while the idea has always been good -- Android developers can easily repackage their apps to distribute in BlackBerry World -- there has always been something holding it back. The Runtime has always been based on Gingerbread, a now 2 generations old version of Android. While as of today that is still the case, it won't always be. 

Announced this morning during the keynote presentation at BlackBerry Jam Europe in Amsterdam, the Runtime will be updated. Eventually. And, the great news for developers and users alike is that when the update happens, it's skipping Ice Cream Sandwich and going straight to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Ultimately, BlackBerry 10 users will benefit from a much better experience too. 

Eventually is the key word, as while confirmation of the plans has been given, no time frame is available at this time. However, it opens the door to many more Android developers to make the jump and port their applications over to BlackBerry 10. Increasing numbers of apps are being developed for Android 4.x only, but at some point those developers will have the same opportunities to distribute their Android apps through BlackBerry World. 

via CrackBerry

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4 years ago

Stock Talk: The downward slide at HTC continues


HTC reported its Q4 results yesterday, and it seems pretty clear that things are going to get worse before they (hopefully) get better. Sales were down 41% compared to the year ago quarter, coming in at US $2 billion. Profitability is essentially gone, given the operating margin of 1%.

HTC’s gross margins were 23% in the quarter. That’s down from 27.1% last year, telling us that pricing pressure is still working against HTC. Given how strong Samsung is in the Android space, it has to be hard to compete. Samsung makes so many of its own parts, from processors to screens to memory. And Samsung is really the only Android manufacturer with so much control over its supply chain. This makes it tough for anyone else to compete on hardware alone, which HTC has to do.

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4 years ago

Amazon Coins coming in May to fuel Kindle Fire purchases


Amazon today announced it'll use its own "Amazon Coins" as a virtual currency for purchasing apps and in-app purchases on the Kindle Fire. The currency system will debut in May, and Amazon says it'll give customers "tens of millions of dollars' worth of free Amazon Coins" to jump-start the economy. (Insert stimulus package jokes/groans here.)

One Amazon Coin is worth 1 cent. They'll only be available to U.S. customers at launch, and they can't be used for subscriptions.

The usual rules apply, Amazon says, in that developers will still get 70 percent of the revenue when users make a purchase with Amazon Coins. There's a small catch, however -- developers need to have their apps submitted and approved in the Amazon Appstore by April 25 to be ready for Amazon Coins at launch.

Sources: Amazon Coins; FAQ

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4 years ago

OUYA Android gaming console adds Amazon to list of retailers


OUYA today in an e-mail announced that its upcoming Android-based gaming console will be sold by several big-box retailers as well as by OUYA itself. A few we already knew -- Amazon's a new addition to the list. Its unclear whether you'll be able to get one in stories, or if it's online only. Preorders are available now -- Target and Best Buy current have live listings -- and prices are as previously listed: $99 for the system and a single controller, $49 for another controller.

More: Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, Target

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4 years ago

Nexus 10 launches in Japan


Some two and a half months after the original launch, Google and Samsung's Nexus 10 is now available in Japan. The high-resolution, 10-inch Nexus tablet is on sale through the Japanese Google Play Store, where it's priced at ¥36,800 (around $400) for the 16GB model, and ¥44,800 (around $480) with 32GB.

Play Store URLs are the same regardless of which country you're in, so Japanese buyers can pick up a Nexus 10 using the links below --

If you're still on the fence, check out our full review of the Nexus 10 from back in November.

Source: Google Japan; via: Engadget

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4 years ago

Samsung announces Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame


Almost identical entry-level Galaxy S3-alikes

Update: Samsung UK tells us that the Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame will be arriving on British shores starting in March.

Samsung has started the morning off by announcing two new low-end devices in its home territory of South Korea. The Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame are both powered by a 1GHz CPU and 512MB of RAM. Both have a 1300mAh battery and 4GB of storage, expandable via microSD. And both look like someone took a Galaxy S3 and put it through a shrink ray.

The main difference between the two handsets is screen size - the Galaxy Fame has a 3.5-inch screen, whereas the Young packs a 3.27-inch panel. Both are HVGA (320x480) resolution though, so you're not dealing with all that many pixels in either case. Other differences include camera set-ups - the Young has a 3-megapixel rear shooter, whereas the Fame has been upgraded slightly to 5MP. And the Fame comes with the option of NFC, something lacking in its smaller -- and likely cheaper -- sibling. Both phones will apparently come in single and dual-SIM versions, in a wide range of color options.

On the software side, you're looking at TouchWiz'd Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on both devices.

There's been no announcement on pricing or availability yet -- we can probably expect individual carriers and Samsung branches to provide more info as the day progresses. In the meantime, full spec sheets can be found over at the source link.

Source: Samsung Tomorrow

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4 years ago

Ouya consoles headed to Gamestop, Target, Best Buy in June with $100 price tag


In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Ouya CEO Julie Uhrman mentioned a few of the retail sales plans for the much anticipated Android console. In addition to Amazon, the Ouya will be available nationwide at Target, Best Buy, and Gamestop stores for $100 this June. Additional controllers will sell for $50 and be available at the same locations.

When asked about sales figures and speculation, Uhrman didn't give a hard number, but felt excited that major retailers were interested in the Ouya, and that this was a good omen for wide consumer appeal. 

We 68,000 backers, and we’ve been selling units every day. The number of orders have grown each month. We haven’t disclosed any numbers. I think it’s fair to say to get established players in the retail space excited about pre-selling OUYA speaks to the excitement in the marketplace. We’ve had 68,000 backers, we have more than that in pre-orders today.

Of course, all this depends on the application catalog. If developers have plenty of great games ready out of the gate like we've heard they will, things should go well for the folks at Ouya, and the retail presence could really drive the inexpensive console's sales. We're looking forward to it all, and think plenty of folks will be excited as June approaches.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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4 years ago

AT&T U-Verse Live TV changes names, improves video quality over LTE


AT&T is rebranding its U-Verse Live TV service today to a much less confusing "Mobile TV" name, and including several improvements to the app at the same time. Branding aside, video quality on Mobile TV will now improve when you're watching on LTE, which seems like a natural progression. The package will also now be a flat $9.99 per month charge regardless of platform, and customers can bill the service straight to their monthly AT&T phone bill rather than a separate account.

Mobile TV will also start offering three add-on packages -- Urban Zone, Playground TV and Paquete en español móvil -- for and additional $4.99 each. The rest of the improvements can be found immediately in its Android app, which can be found at the Play Store link above.

Source: AT&T

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4 years ago

The badassery of Borderlands 2 and Steam on Project Shield


We've all seen the CES demos, and salivated while watching Phil put his hands all over one of the prototype Project Shield devices in his hands-on, but there is no way that's enough. We want to see as much as we can about this bad boy, and NVIDIA knows it. Starting today, they will be showing a new Project Shield video every Monday to build our anticipation for the next generation in gaming.

This week, Will from NVIDIA walks us through logging into Steam and playing some Borderlands 2 over the network right on his Project Shield device. It looks simple, the frame rate is great, and even the latency looks low enough to satisfy even the most hardcore gamer. It looks like it really is as badass as NVIDIA is claiming. Hit the break and watch the video.

Source: NVIDIA

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4 years ago

Could Google be working on a unified messaging platform?


The screenshot above, while not Android, is extremely interesting regardless because of what it may be showing off. Posted by developer François Beaufort, what's seen here is a Chrome OS desktop with both a new notifications system and more interestingly a new app icon that we've never seen out of Google before. The "rich notifications", which show messages, calls and Google+ activity all in-line and within one pane are displayed in a new Jelly Bean and Google Now design. The new icon, to the right of the Google Drive app in the dock, shows four cascading Google-themed chat boxes.

This screenshot raises a whole lot more questions than it answers, and instantly gets us speculating as to whether or not this new notification system and app are a sign of something bigger than just Chrome OS notifications. Could this finally be a unified messaging service from Google? This could quite easily be just Google+ notifications -- missed hangout calls, Google+ Messenger messages and picture shares -- but we surely hope it's more than that.

Now of course this isn't Android, but it could have a huge impact on Android users if this turns out to be a true unified messaging service from Google. A unified messaging system that brings together Google Voice, Talk, Google+ and others would be a huge step forward for the integration of Google's often-disjointed services.

Source: François Beaufort (Google+); Via: Droid-Life

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