Rumors surrounding Google’s cloud storage service are ramping up as we move closer toward the product’s rumored release date. The service will apparently be called Google Drive and is similar to Dropbox, which allows users to store files on cloud servers and access them from computers and mobile devices. According to a leaked screenshot obtained by TalkAndroid, Google Drive will offer 5GB of free storage instead of the previously rumored 1GB. The image also reaffirms that files can be accessed through computers, mobile phones, tablets and via a web browser, and it will allow users to edit a document in one place that will automatically be updated in all locations. Google Drive is rumored to launch the week of April 16th.
Saturday, March 31, 2012
Friday, March 30, 2012
Sony today indicated via its web site that it will push the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update to the Xperia arc S, neo V, and ray starting in mid-April. The update will be distributed over the course of four to six weeks. Sony said the next batch of updates, slated for the Xperia arc, neo, mini, mini pro, pro, and active, will commence in late May or early June. The update will only be available for download and installation via Windows or Mac computers, and won't be pushed out over the air. Sony won't deliver Android 4.0 to the Xperia S line of devices until the latter part of the second quarter. It's worth mentioning that the scheduling of Android 4.0 updates for some devices will vary by market and carrier, which is something that Sony takes care to note in its announcement. Still, it's good to see Sony keeping us up to date on its ICS rollout plans, and I'm sure owners of all of these 2011 Xperia handsets are glad to have an idea of when they'll be getting a taste of Google's latest dessert.
Sony has made a beta version of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich available for the Xperia Play smartphone. Sony cautions that the beta software is not a final build of Android 4.0, and those who download and install it may encounter bugs. This software is for unlocked variants of the Xperia Play, and is likely not compatible with versions of the Play sold by AT&T and Verizon Wireless. Sony has made similar betas available to a handful of its other phones. It hopes those who install the beta will share feedback so that it may fine-tune the code for all devices. A word of warning, though -- Wifi connectivity is apparently not functional in this beta, and there are no Google apps included either, apparently due to licensing issues. The latter can be solved by finding, downloading and flashing the apps yourself, but the lack of Wifi will probably be a deal-breaker for many. That said, we expect enterprising Android hackers to have a workaround for that before too long.
Google has released a minor update to Google Wallet, its mobile payment tool. The updates include user interface changes, improved management of Citi Mastercards, and more flexible prepaid card top-ups. The update is compatible with the Sprint Nexus S 4G and unlocked versions of the Galaxy Nexus running with AT&T SIM cards. The updated software is free.
Thursday, March 29, 2012
We've been hearing rumors that a Google Nexus-branded tablet was coming, but Mountain View may have even more ambitious plans in store. The Wall Street Journal reports that Google will open up its own online store, where it will market and sell tablet devices directly to consumers. In an interesting twist, it's said that the company won't actually manufacture any of the offered hardware itself, instead leaving that duty to partners (Samsung and Asus are both named). The tablets will reportedly feature official Google co-branding, however. Google is even said to be considering subsidizing the cost of the tablets, in order to make them price-competitive with the Amazon Kindle Fire.
The move comes in attempt to counter the massive success of both Apple's iPad as well as the Fire, the latter of which has achieved success not seen by other Android tablets. Of course, Google tried a similar strategy when it offered the original Nexus One directly to consumers, an approach that didn't work in the company's favor. While there's no exact launch date provided, the WSJ states that Google hopes to open the new store within the calendar year.
With expectations at an all-time low and analysts lowering estimates left and right, Research In Motion on Thursday reported its results for the fourth fiscal quarter of 2012. RIM posted a surprising beat in the third fiscal quarter when it managed earnings of $1.27 per share on $5.2 billion in sales. At the same time, however, the Waterloo, Ontario-based BlackBerry maker issued worse than expected fourth-quarter EPS guidance of between $0.80 and $0.95, and it said revenue would likely fall between $4.6 billion and $4.98 billion. RIM has now confirmed adjusted net income of $0.80 per share, on revenue of $4.2 billion. Read on for more.
RIM said it shipped 11.1 million BlackBerry smartphones and more than 500,000 PlayBook tablets last quarter. Smartphone shipments came in at the low end of its forecast of between 11 million and 12 million units. Wall Street was expecting earnings of $0.81 per share and $4.54 billion in revenue. In the fourth fiscal quarter of 2011, RIM posted a profit of $710 million, or $1.27 per share, on $4.08 billion in sales.
The company confirmed that RIM co-founder Jim Balsillie will step down as director and leave the company.
RIM is also expected to confirm during its earnings call that multiple top executives will be laid off as part of a significant corporate restructuring. The news was first reported by The Globe and Mail.
The struggling smartphone vendor said it is facing significant challenges, and it is currently reviewing strategic opportunities and potential partnerships. RIM also said that its first BlackBerry 10 smartphone is on track to launch in late 2012.
The move to cut 400 jobs and close 50 stores nationwide was announced alongside Best Buy's Q4 earnings report, which includes action items aimed to trim $800 million in costs by 2015. The closings will no-doubt come along with staffer reductions, some of whom could be transferred to one of 100 Best Buy Mobile "small format stand-alone stores" set to launch next year. While an unfortunate move for some customers and employees, it does show some foresight on behalf of BBY management, who likely recognize a continuing shift to online purchasing, and a greater emphasis on mobile devices, which require significantly smaller showrooms, cost less to ship and could offer greater margins to boot.
RIM’s former co-CEO and current director of the board Jim Balsillie is leaving RIM. “As I complete my retirement from RIM, I’m grateful for this remarkable experience and for the opportunity to have worked with outstanding professionals who helped turn a Canadian idea into a global success,” Balsillie said in a statement.
The Cellphone Repair Shop is hawking a kit that will outfit your plain old RAZR with genuine Motorola RAZR Maxx parts for $110, battery included of course. The site recommends that you send your handset to its repair facility for "professional installation," but we're sure some of you are up to the challenge. How about it, RAZR owners, are any of you tinkerers going to try and Maxx-out your handset?
Sprint has changed its stance on WiMax devices and no longer plans to bring new WiMax gear to the market, said Bob Azzi, Sprint's senior vice president of networks. Earlier this year, Sprint said that it would offer both CDMA/WiMax and CDMA/LTE devices through 2012, and that it would stop selling WiMax devices by the end of the year. Azzi's comments reflect a change in the company's position.
Azzi noted that the company will use the G-Block of its 1900MHz spectrum to launch LTE by the middle of the year. "We are wrapping up final field integration tests," Azzi said. "The technology works and delivers more benefits than we expected." Sprint will have 15 LTE devices available by the end of the year, including smartphones, tablets, and mobile hotspots. The company also plans to refarm portions of its 800MHz spectrum for use with LTE. It is currently transitioning its iDEN customers to its CDMA network, and will eventually use that freed-up spectrum for LTE.
Considering that Sprint is planning to roll out LTE service by mid-2012 and will be releasing around 15 LTE-capable devices by the end of the year, it makes sense that the carrier would decide to cease launching new WiMAX products. Sprint has yet to say when it'll be releasing its new LTE devices like the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and LG Viper, saying only that availability information will be revealed closer to launch, but a recent rumor claimed that the Galaxy Nexus could be here as soon as the middle of April. How many of you are considering checking out one of Sprint's LTE devices once they finally hit?
The HTC One S may be going on sale in some parts of Europe as early as next Monday, but the phone's U.S. launch might not be far behind. TmoNews obtained the T-Mobile internal screenshot you see above, which references a launch date of April 22, just over three weeks from now. The image shows the T-Mobile version of the device, alongside a countdown clock displaying the purported date.
The title reads"All good things must come to an end" and I'd like to say Mark Hearn, you and SprintFeed will be missed.
SprintFeed will stop publishing effective April 2nd 2012, be sure to continue following Mark and his post on TechnoBuffalo.
Mark you can rest assured I will continue to follow your post, and redirect readers to your post. As a fellow blogger I know how hard it can be at times. We at The Phone Ninja wish you nothing but the best.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
RapidShare is widely known as an invaluable tool for the illegal sharing of copyrighted digital material. Much like Megaupload, which was shuttered earlier this year when company founder Kim Dotcom was arrested and charged with racketeering and violating anti-piracy laws, RapidShare allows users to upload any file and share a link with other users who may then download the content. While some users share files legally with RapidShare, millions more upload copyrighted movies, music and eBooks which are then downloaded illegally by others around the world who find links to the files on blogs or through special search engines. Following a preliminary ruling, a court in Germany has now declared RapidShare to be legal, but it must utilize a monitoring mechanisms if it wishes to remain operational.
Today they have officially landed in the market. Opera Mini 7 brings a faster browsing experience and allows you to pan around sites quicker thanks to hardware acceleration. In addition they have expanded the ability to their "speed dials" which give quick and easy access to your favorite websites without needing to access the bookmarks or use the keyboard. Last, Opera says the browser is better at compressing data, which can save users money by making more efficient use of cellular data. The browser is a free download from Google Play.
The update is version IMM76 and will bump users to Android 4.0.4. XOOMers can also expect a handful of software enhancements, including improvements to the camera and image quality, quicker screen rotation and better stability.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
BlackBerry Bridge has just received an update bringing it to v188.8.131.52. No change log listed as of now, you will definitely want to log in to App World and check for the update if you are a BlackBerry PlayBook owner.
As we have seen in the past, PlayBook OS updates usually follow shortly behind Bridge updates, so you'll want to be ready for if when that drops.
Download/update BlackBerry Bridge
According to TmoNews, the nation’s No.4 carrier may be looking to increase the price of its premium 5GB and ultra 10GB unlimited data packages. The change could go into effect as early as April 4th and would add an additional $5 to the cost each plan. The 5GB plan will jump from $35 to $40 per month and the 10GB plan will increase from $65 to $70. T-Mobile’s Value Plan pricing will remain unchanged. The premium and ultra plan increases will only apply to customers who sign up for service after the effective date, however. The price increase comes as the carrier is looking to restructure and in doing so, will also cut 5% of its workforce and close seven call centers over the next three months.
When a company purchases a domain name, it can sometimes point to a new product name. However, sometimes it may just be to thwart confusion, as seen with the case when RIM purchased ‘BlackBerryBlackPad.com’ after rumors circulated that the BlackBerry tablet was codenamed ‘BlackPad’.
Nevertheless, a new domain purchased by RIM has been spotted. The new domain is ‘BlackBerrySpin.com, which of course doesn’t lead anywhere yet. The domain was registered through the brand protection company MarkMonitor, where other web properties that RIM owns like BlackBerryTablet.com are managed.
What could ‘BlackBerry Spin’ be? A BlackBerry 10 phone, tablet or service? Or, merely nothing more than a defensive measure to protect RIM’s intellectual property? If RIM did use ‘BlackBerry Spin’ what should they use the name for?