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5 years ago

Is the third time the charm? OTA package for Verizon Galaxy Nexus now available from Google


Another new month, another new OTA package for the Verizon Galaxy Nexus. For those that just want to get it on, here's the link direct from Google. Note that it's not a full ROM, and you'll need to be stock to flash it. Now where were we ...

This may play out like the last OTA update that mysteriously appeared, then just as quickly disappeared from Google's servers, but we're hearing that the OTA is pushing, so you might want to check your phone and see if it finds an update itself. Hopefully, this is the real deal and we can go from worrying about when the update will come and get back to complaining about the update like we're supposed to do. I kid, I kid. 

For instruction on what to do if you're rooted and ROM'd, be sure to hit the Verizon G Nex forums and read a bit -- everything you want or need can be found there. Our fingers are crossed this time!

Thanks, JD!

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5 years ago

Samsung Australia hosting event next week, official Galaxy S III announcement due?


Despite not being specifically mentioned as a world tour venue, it seems that Sydney, Australia is set for a Galaxy S III event on May 31. When the venue cities were shown off during the keynote presentation in London, the closest to Australia was an unannounced location in South-East Asia. PC World Australia however, are reporting that Samsung Australia have started to send out invites for an event in Sydney next Thursday. The current official line from Samsung sits a little more discreetly: 

“Samsung Electronics Australia is pleased there is continued interest about our GALAXY range in Australia, but we have no plans to make any announcements at this time.”

Australians are expecting to see Sammy's latest flagship launch on all the major carriers, plus potentially Virgin Mobile as well. Telstra are likely to be eying up a 4G LTE version too. 

via Ausdroid

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5 years ago

Android A to Z: ClockworkMod Recovery


We're getting a little hacky in this round of Android A to Z, and we're going to have a look at ClockworkMod recovery -- the de facto standard of custom recoveries for Android. It's open source, based on the stock Android recovery, and brings a ton of options to the table that aren't possible otherwise.

First, let's look at why anyone would use a custom recovery. The standard Android recovery can do two things for the user -- flash system files that have been signed and verified as coming from the correct source (either Google or an OEM), and wipe away user data and cached information. Both these operations are pretty important, but there's more many users want and need from the recovery mode of their phone. Things like backing up all user data into image files that can be restored easily, or flashing software that doesn't come from Google or the OEM -- like custom ROMs -- and wiping some residual data to troubleshoot things like file permission errors. It's pretty advanced stuff, but it's very handy to have it for many of us.

ClockworkMod recovery (we'll call it CWM from here on out) does all this, and does it very well. It's provided free, and has a pretty handy wrapper around it so it can be used while the phone or tablet is up and running. We're talking about Rom Manager, of course. With CWM you can erase the user data from your system completely -- including that extra data that may cause an issue, selectively erase portions of it (a godsend for troubleshooting), create a restore image of the running system, and flash custom firmware at will. If you're running a custom version of Android on any newer phone or tablet, you're probably using it right now. If you're thinking about trying your luck with a custom ROM or tweak, CWM is where you'll get started.

Check out the complete Android Dictionary

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5 years ago

Google Shopper updated with refreshed UI and tighter Google Offers integration


Seems as though Google has been making plenty of little updates to their bevy of Google branded apps in the Google Play Store and now the latest to get some love is Google Shopper. Although it doesn't bring massive change, the latest update available for download brings a slightly refreshed UI and tighter integration with Google Offers to the mix. In addition to those changes, history and search suggestions will now appear in the app to help with speeding things up overall.

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5 years ago

Jury finds Android did not infringe Oracle patents


The jury in the Oracle v. Google case has found that Android does not infringe on the eight claims concerning two patents (RE38,104 and 6,061,520) Oracle owns. Judge Alsup has dismissed the jury, and after a long trial they are now finished in their part of the proceedings. Now, the real work for Judge Alsup begins.

The last verdict, in which the jury found that Android did infringe on the structure, sequence, and organization (SSO) of 37 Java APIs, still needs some attention, as the jury could not agree if these should be covered under fair-use rules, so Judge Alsup will have to determine that. There were also two minor infringements found in the rangeCheck code and the eight Java test files that were inadvertently included in early releases of Android.

Should Judge Alsup find that the SSO of the Java APIs is not copyrightable, Oracle will receive damages for the rangeCheck file and test files, to a maximum of $150,000 each. If the SSO portions are found to be copyrightable, all three infringements will go to a new trial to determine damages. Of course, we fully expect Oracle to appeal every decision it can, in front of any court that will listen.

In the end, it looks like Oracle won't be getting the billions of dollars they wanted, and more importantly, won't be eligible for any injunctive relief. There will be no "Oracle Tax" like we see from Microsoft after they went after OEMs (and suspiciously won't fight Google), and Oracle will have to find another way to make money in the changing tech world. 

While it looks like a major victory for Google (though things aren't yet finished), we still have to pay for million dollar trials, and someone has to pay the legal fees on both sides. Google may have won today, but make no mistake -- our wallet lost. Until the software patent situation is revamped, the only real winners are lawyers.

More: The Verge

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5 years ago

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for the LG Nitro HD leaks out


If you own a LG Nitro HD and fancy loading up a leaked version of Ice Cream Sandwich onto it, you'll have to set aside some time to get it taken care of. A presumably early build of ICS is now available for download and thus far appears to be running quite well for most folks according to the responses to it over at XDA. Several variations of the device have been tested including Bell, AT&T, Fido and a few others. Some have noted their IMEI has gone missing while others report no change in that area. In the end, it's a leak -- use caution if you're going to check it out.

Source RootzWiki; via: XDA

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5 years ago

PhotoBox! [Android App Review]


With all the hubbub around photo sharing services on Facebook, it only seems natural that someone would make an app that lets you not only snap pictures and add totally hipster effects to them, but also go through any album you can access, and edit those pictures directly from your phone (even if you didn't take them). That someone (or group of someones) would be Weaver Mobile, and their app, PhotoBox!

PhotoBox! is sort of an anomaly to me, simply because I'm not sure I understand the practical application. In short, you can go through anyone's pictures, choose one, and edit it. There's pretty standard options like crop and auto-color and such, and then there's some absolutely off-the-wall ones, like putting goofy borders around things, drawing with your finger (stylus style), and even adding typed text.

In my video review (below the break), I went pretty crazy with it, creating something so tacky and hideous, there's nary a chance it'll get a single 'Like' once it was posted, but that's not quite my issue with it, either. In short, I just don't understand why such an app exists.

Sure, it lets you edit photos. It does that pretty well, too. Definitely a strike against it for looking like a straight iPhone port, but hey, what can you do? (Well, I guess you could follow Android design guidelines.) But other than that? It feels like it takes all of Instagram's hipsterness, leaves out the social aspect completely, and says, "Ta-da! Behold, now you can sepia tone photos that you took before ​Instagram existed!"

Maybe it's just me. Instagram is lost on me, Pinterest is lost on me, maybe I'm just getting old. For this reviewer, though, while I can certainly say this app is functional, I must also tack on that I don't see a lot of real-world use for it.

Oh, and get off my lawn.

PhotoBox! is free in the Google Play Store. We've got video and download links after the break.

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5 years ago

Paramount Pictures content coming to Prime Instant Video


Amazon has been busy gathering up plenty of content partners for the past little while and now they've come to agreements with the folks from Paramount Pictures. Amazon Prime members will be able to access hundreds of videos from the Paramount Pictures catalog through any Prime Instant Video compatible device, including the Amazon Kindle Fire.

“We are continuing to invest in building a vast selection for Prime Instant Video and are excited to bring Prime customers some of the most renowned and popular films in cinema history under this new agreement with Paramount,” said Brad Beale, director of digital video content acquisition for Amazon. “This deal will bring Prime Instant Video customers hundreds of new movies to enjoy on their Kindle Fire or any device connected to Amazon Instant Video, including titles such as Star Trek, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Top Gun, The Italian Job and The Truman Show, and we will remain committed to adding even more great movies and TV shows to Prime Instant Video in the future.”

If you don't already have an Amazon Prime membership, you can sign up for a one month free trial right now. Looking for the full press release from Amazon? It's below for you all or you can hit up the Amazon website for the full details as well.

Source: Amazon

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5 years ago

Suit up! New Men In Black III game now available from Gameloft


Suit up, it's time! Men In Black III is a new game from Gameloft to celebrate the upcoming movie and now, it's available in the Google Play Store available for download. In it, you get to run the MIB Agency with some help from others but a new threat is now plotting against mankind and you must defend it. Are you ready?

  • Train your agents and assign them to missions
  • Access a wide range of MIB weapons and gadgets like the Neuralyzer, the Deatomizer and the infamous Noisy Cricket.
  • Build dozens of different rooms to upgrade your weapons and develop your agency.
  • Travel in time to fight aliens in different areas of New York including Brooklyn, Times Square, and Central Park
  • Utilize your agent’s futuristic weapons and equipment
  • Meet dozens of aliens faithfully inspired by the Men in Black universe
  • Invite your friends from Gameloft LIVE! & Facebook to play
  • Ask for your friends’ help during fights to defeat powerful aliens
  • Visit your friends’ headquarters and get rewarded for lending a hand

Unlike Mass Effect Infiltrator, this release is available for free and will only download an additional 60-70MB to your device. Sadly though, it doesn't seem to work on all devices. My Galaxy Note states it is incompatible though my Galaxy Nexus runs the game just fine. If you're looking for more info, jump below for the latest trailer as well as the download link.

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5 years ago

HTC One XL coming to Germany on Vodafone, O2 and T-Mobile


The HTC One XL has graced the Far East, Australia and North America (under the name HTC One X), and now it's headed to Europe, with today's news that Vodafone Germany will launch the device next month. The One XL is almost identical to the international One X, except that it sports a 4G LTE radio and dual-core Snapdragon S4 chip instead of the Tegra 3 found in the One X. (That's due to Tegra 3's lack of support for LTE.)

Basically, this is an AT&T One X for Europe, with European LTE bands. In addition to dual-band HSPA on 900 and 2100MHz, the Euro One XL supports LTE on 800, 1800 and 2600MHz bands. This means it'll also run on the UK's 4G LTE networks, whenever they're launched.

The One XL will launch in Germany on Vodafone, T-Mobile and O2, and there'll also be unlocked SIM-free version available. Prices reportedly start at €659 (~$830).

via: TheUnwired

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5 years ago

HTC Bluetooth Car StereoClip review


I've always had a love-hate relationship with Bluetooth. I love the idea. Being able to easily and wirelessly connect our devices to other devices just makes sense. Wires and cables are decidedly unsightly and unsophisticated. But in actual use, well, that's where the hate comes in. Sometimes Bluetooth works great. Other times it's the devil, refusing to connect, or to hold or connection, or basically sounding crappy.

I've been pleasantly surprised by the HTC Bluetooth Car StereoClip. (Sprint currently is selling it under the "Bluetooth Music Adaptor" name.) Here it is, in a sentence: Pair it with your phone, plug it into a 3.5mm jack, and play audio to your heart's content. Done. It's that easy. (But that doesn't mean you shouldn't read on for our full review. Let's hit it!)

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5 years ago

Win a tablet or smartphone with SwiftKey and Mobile Nations

SwiftKey and Mobile Nations (hey, that's us!) are giving you the chance to win a phone or tablet of your choice. SwiftKey is one of the leading aftermarket keyboard for Android, and in return for letting the SwiftKey guys know how you use your phones and tablets, you could bag the device of your choice, up to a value of $800.

Head over to to begin, complete the survey. If you're one of the lucky three (yes, three) winners, you could get your hands on your dream phone or tablet, even if it doesn't run Android. In fact, even if you don't currently own a device that supports their kick-ass keyboard, SwiftKey still wants to hear from you, and you could still be a winner.

The survey is open internationally for smartphone and tablet owners aged 18 and over, and it runs until midnight on Wednesday, June 6.  Be sure to check SwiftKey's site for the full terms and conditions.

Head over to SwiftKey's survey page to get started!

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5 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Appeal coming June 5, brings a prepaid QWERTY slider to AT&T


AT&T announced the Samsung Galaxy Appeal today, another addition to its prepaid smartphone lineup. The Appeal will be unique because it will be the first prepaid smartphone that offers a QWERTY sliding keyboard. As more smartphones drop physical keyboards, there is still a large contingent that demands them, so it's good to see the option in the prepaid category.

The Appeal, like many of the other prepaid options, will feature lower end specs. Here there are:

  • 3.2-inch HVGA TFT 480 x 320 screen
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • 512MB RAM
  • 1.8GB ROM
  • 800MHz processor
  • 3MP rear-facing camera
  • SD slot that supports up to 32GB
  • Made with 80& recycled materials

AT&T prepaid data plans are as follows:

  • 1GB - $25/month
  • 200MB - $15/month
  • 50MB - $5/month

If you're interested in the Galaxy Appeal, it will be released on June 5th to Walmart stores. On July 15th, it can be purchased from other AT&T GoPhone locations.

Source: AT&T

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5 years ago

Sony Walkman Z Series review


Remember MP3 players? You know, those small electronic devices that old people used to keep their music on? They didn't make phone calls. They didn't play Angry Birds. If they're before your time, you’re not alone: after reaching the height of their popularity with Apple’s iPod, digital music players saw a sharp decline in sales, due in large part to the meteoric rise of smartphones. As phones became more and more capable of becoming your sole device, the need for MP3 players quickly faded away. Why carry around an extra device when you’ve got your entire music collection, Spotify, Rdio, Pandora, and even FM Radio right on your Android phone?

But don’t call digital music players dead just yet. Enter the Sony Walkman Z, a revitalized Walkman that Sony is calling the “ultimate portable media player.” It’s powered by Android and it’s got a heck of a set of specs, but where does this device fall into your daily life? And is its $249 starting price tag justified? Despite its delightful music experience, it’s hard to recommend dropping so much money on a device that is so limited, especially when tablets start at around the same price. If you’re holding onto your dumbphone, though, and are constantly within wi-fi coverage, the Walkman Z is a nice option for housing your music collection.

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5 years ago

Wallpaper Wednesday - Lego Darth Vader, Ubuntu, Cherry Blossom Path



Tired of that boring wallpaper you currently are sporting on your wonderful Android device? Spend hours looking for something new to use only to come up empty? Some great creations have hit our Android Central Wallpaper Gallery lately, and we are back showcasing them for you to see.

If you don't see what you want in the gallery, and happen to find it somewhere else, do us a favor will ya? Spread the love to the rest of the Android Central Community and upload it, it's simple and takes only a minute. Be sure to log in before uploading so we know who they came from, and we can give you the proper credit when we show them off!

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