Saturday, July 27, 2013

Moto X With T-Mobile Compatibility Hits FCC

Moto X with TMobile compatibility gets FCC approval
Despite the fact that the Moto X hasn't even been officially announced (unless you count Eric Schmidt's Idaho flaunt-fest or Dennis Woodside's D11 talk as "official"), there's a lot we already know about the device. What we haven't heard for certain yet are which carriers in the US will offer the new handset, though FCC docs and other leaks have revealed AT&T, Verizon and Sprint as likely candidates so far. 
Whether or not the UnCarrier will really pick it up, a variant of the Motorola X known as the XT1053 has made its way through the FCC approval process with all the bands you've grown to love and use on other T-Mobile devices, such as AWS HSPA+ and LTE (along with bands 2 and 17, making this theoretically compatible with AT&T as well). This is a pretty clear indicator that worst-case customers will be able to purchase an unlocked version of the device with the right frequencies in tow. 
Additionally, we noticed evidence that 802.11ac will also make an appearance. Have a look at the docs for yourself below, if you so desire.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Google Officially Unveiled The New Nexus 7

Google officially unveiled the new Nexus 7, the device runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and offers improved specs all around.
Google said it’s still focusing on portability and performance. The device is 50 grams lighter and narrower than the original model, which it says makes it more comfortable to hold. The device offers a soft-touch feel and has a black body with a few glossy finishes. The screen offers a full HD 1920 x 1200-pixel display, which Google says is the world’s highest resolution 7-inch tablet with 323 pixels per inch (ppi). The screen also supports a 30-percent wider range of colors.

The new Nexus 7 also has stereo speakers and virtual surround sound tech provided by Fraunhofer. There’s a 1.2-megapixel camera for Hangouts and a  5-megapixel camera for 1080p video and photos. Under the hood the device has a quad-core 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor which offers an 80 percent faster speed and 4x the graphics performance. The system memory has been upgraded from 1GB to 2GB, too. Dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 are supported, as is 4G LTE support for AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon networks all from the same device. HDMI, NFC and Qi wireless charging is also included.
The 16GB model costs $229, the 32GB model costs $269 and the 4G LTE model will cost $349. It lands July 30 from Google Play and will be in more retailer stores than ever before including Best Buy, GameStop, Walmart, Staples, Office Max, Office Depot, Amazon, HSN, RadioShack, J&R and B&H.

Google Announces Android 4.3 Jelly Bean

Google today announced a minor bump in its Android platform to version 4.3 Jelly Bean. The core new features of Android 4.3 include the addition of restricted profiles to the multi-user tool, which lets users control what apps/services can be accessed by the other users. Android 4.3 adds support for Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy, also called Bluetooth Smart. This will let Android 4.3 devices interact with new Bluetooth accessories, such as heart rate monitors. 

Android 4.3 also adds support for OpenGL ES 3.0 for improved graphics in games. The updated operating system offers new digital rights management APIs, which will eventually lead to the availability of more full HD 1080p video from third-party providers such as Netflix. Android 4.3 also adds a wide range of tools for developers, such as optimized location and sensor capabilities, improved access to notifications, more languages, user interface automation, and improved enterprise security tools, such as WPA-2 Wi-Fi networks. The Google Nexus 7, a new tablet from Google, will be the first device to ship with Android 4.3, but Google will deliver Android 4.3 to the Nexus 4, Galaxy Nexus, and first-generation Nexus 7 devices.

Source: Google

Google Debuts Chromecast Media Streaming Device

Google today announced a new tool that it hopes will improve the experience of sharing YouTube videos from a smartphone, tablet, or laptop to a television set. Chromecast resembles a USB thumb drive, but plugs into any HDMI port on the back of a TV set. 

Chromecast accesses the internet via Wi-Fi. Android, iOS, and Chrome devices can then see the Cast button, which appears in the YouTube app, and push whatever video they are watching to Chromecast. The Chromecast device will turn the TV set on and automatically switch it to the proper input. The video will then play automatically. Pressing the Cast button again in the app on a smartphone will cease playing the video on the TV and bring it back to the phone. 

The Chromecast offers similar, but much improved, functionality to last year's Nexus Q living room device. The Chromecast works with content that is in the cloud, such as Google Play movies, Pandora music, and other third-party content sources. It does not pass content that is stored on a smartphone's local storage to the TV for viewing. It works with Android, Chrome, and iOS, but not BlackBerry or Windows Phone. Chromecast is available today for $35. It can be purchased from the Google Play Store.

Source: Google

Pre Order now at Amazon or Google

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Leaked Press Images Of The Motorola Moto X

August 1st Moto X press event in New York is right around the corner, but that doesn't mean we have to wait until then to see the official press shots of the device. The leaked Motorola Moto X images give us a clear look at the front and back of the phone. No new details were released with the images, but they do confirm the semi-transparent navigation bar which was spotted on previously leaked images of the device.
The rumored mid-range spec sheet of the Motorola Moto X isn't something that will impress power hungry Android users, but it’s unique customization options, “always-on” voice commands, active updates and unique gesture controls should make this device quite appealing to the mass market if Motorola is able to get in into consumers hands at a bargain basement price.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The New Nexus 7 Surfaces Online

Nexus 7 sequel.

Android Central has just posted a gallery of images of what it believes is the Nexus 7 successor.  The report claims that the device will again be manufactured by ASUS and come in 16GB and 32GB models.
Nexus 7 sequel.

The tablet features two cameras, a 1.2MP shooter on the front and a 5MP rear facer, made by Chicony.

As far as specs go, the Nexus 7 v2 is listed as having a Qualcomm APQ8064 motherboard with a Snapdragon S4 pro processor. The device is also said to have a whopping 4GB of DDR3L RAM, though Android Central notes that these specs may not be final. The tablet will also supposedly feature stereo speakers. 

Google Maps Update Available for iPhone, iPad, And iPod Touch

iPhone Screenshot 3   iPhone Screenshot 4

Google has made an updated version of Google Maps available to iOS devices, including the Apple iPhone. The update, which has already been released to Android devices, makes a number of changes to the app. It offers improved navigation features thanks to live traffic updates and real-time re-routing when problems occur on a navigation path. It also adds a new tool called Explore, which can be used to perform searches for nearby places without typing, and builds in reviews for places such as restaurants and other businesses. Last, it populates maps with Google Offers that are nearby. Google Maps 2.0 for iOS is free to download from the iTunes App Store.

Source: iTunes App Store

Rumored HP Android Smartphone With Stock Android Leaked


A claimed render of HP’s promised smartphone sent anonymously to phoneArena apparently shows it running stock Android.

The render is pretty nice, and the hardware appears rather generic, so there’s no guarantee it’s genuine but the company did opt for near-stock Android for its Slate tablet. If the leak is real, we’d applaud a decision to go with a pure Android experience but add that HP will need to pull something out of the hat with either specs or apps to meet its promise of “a differentiated experience.”

We suggested earlier that HP’s credentials as the world’s largest PC manufacturer might make a business-orientated phone a smart move now that the market share of the former business smartphone leader, Blackberry, has fallen to less than 5 percent. Something special in the hardware perhaps a fingerprint sensor for security would one possibility.

Enterprise-orientated apps would perhaps be a more likely one, especially given the company’s partnership with Google to offer Google Apps to small businesses. A similar approach with a smartphone might enable the company to meet that new-and-different promise despite a rather ordinary-looking box running stock Android.

Source: phoneArena

Verizon Schedules July 23rd Event


Verizon just started sending out invites to the press for an event taking place later this month in New York City via TheVerge. While the carrier isn't specifically mentioning what we’ll be seeing at the event, it did say to expect the next generation of its most popular family of devices, which leads us to believe it will likely be an announcement for new Droid devices.

Google Sending Invites To July 24 Event

Google has just sent out invites to an event next Wednesday, July 24th. The invite says that it is a “breakfast with Sundar Pichai,” which means that the focus of the event will probably be on Android and/or Chrome, which are the two departments that Pichai oversees. For those that can’t make the breakfast or were not invited, it will be live streamed on YouTube, as well.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

AT&T Agrees To Acquire Leap Wireless

Screen Shot 2013-07-12 at 2.11.39 PM
AT&T has announced that it has come to agreement to acquire U.S. carrier Leap Wireless (which operates the Cricket brand) for $15 per share. The acquisition will cover all of Leap Wireless’s assets, expanding AT&T’s coverage to Leap’s 5 million subscribers.
Leap, notably, runs a pre-paid deal for iPhones in the U.S.

This move enhances AT&T’s spectrum, retail store count, employee number, and more, so it is likely a positive move for its wireless customers. It’s possible that this announcement is related to the upcoming press event AT&T has scheduled for July 16th.

Official Statement:

DALLAS & SAN DIEGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) and prepaid wireless provider Leap Wireless International Inc. (NASDAQ:LEAP) have entered into an agreement for AT&T to acquire Leap for $15 per share in cash. Under the terms of the agreement, AT&T will acquire all of Leap’s stock and wireless properties, including licenses, network assets, retail stores and approximately 5 million subscribers. As of April 15, 2013, Leap had $2.8 billion of net debt. Leap shareholders will also receive a contingent right entitling them to the net proceeds received on the sale of Leap’s 700 Mhz “A Block” spectrum in Chicago, which Leap purchased for $204 million in August 2012.

Leap’s network covers approximately 96 million people in 35 U.S. states. Leap currently operates under the Cricket brand a 3G CDMA network, as well as a 4G LTE network covering 21 million people in these areas, and has 3,400 employees.

AT&T will retain the Cricket brand name, provide Cricket customers with access to AT&T’s award-winning 4G LTE mobile network, utilize Cricket’s distribution channels, and expand Cricket’s presence to additional U.S. cities. The result will be increased competition, better device choices, improved customer care and a significantly enhanced mobile Internet experience for consumers seeking low-cost prepaid wireless plans.

The combined company will have the financial resources, scale and spectrum to better compete with other major national providers for customers interested in low-cost prepaid service. Cricket’s employees, operations and distribution will jump start AT&T’s expansion into the highly competitive prepaid segment.

The acquisition includes spectrum in the PCS and AWS bands covering 137 million people and is largely complementary to AT&T’s existing spectrum licenses. Immediately after approval of the transaction, AT&T plans to put Leap’s unutilized spectrum which covers 41 million people to use in furthering its 4G LTE deployment and providing additional capacity and enhanced network performance for customers’ growing mobile Internet usage.
Owners of approximately 29.8% of Leap’s outstanding shares have entered into an agreement to vote in favor of the transaction.

The transaction is subject to review by the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice and to other customary closing conditions. AT&T expects the transaction to close in six to nine months.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Samsung Acquires Cloud TV Startup Boxee

According to a report from TheMarkerBoxee has been acquired by consumer electronics giant Samsung for “tens of millions of dollars.” The figure is said to be less than $30 million, which is the amount Israel-based Boxee was rumored to be looking for. Samsung’s Boxee buy could be a good play that will give the company a solid cloud-based DVR and TV streaming service to bolster its entertainment portfolio. Boxee has raised $28.5 million in capital since it was founded in 2007, and its service has gone through several major changes. Boxee started as a media hub but the service now consists of a set-top box with several compatible video apps, and unlimited cloud DVR service that allows users to stream live or recorded TV to computers, smartphones and tablets.

UPDATE: Moto X Registration Page Goes Live


Motorola has launched an email registration page on its site for those who would like to stay informed about the product. The Moto X registration page does not reveal any new details about the phone, but it does claim that, “by the end of summer, we expect there to be more than 2000 new employees in Ft. Worth, TX working to make all this possible.”

Check out the Moto X sign up page for your self

Update: Through a website, buyers will be able to select from a palette of different colors. One color can be used for the back case and another can be selected for the trim of the phone. Users will also be able to engrave a name or message on the back cover as well as upload a personal photo through the site to be used as the wallpaper on the phone's screen, according to people familiar with the rollout.

In addition, they say the phone will be running Android 4.2.2, which is currently being tested by U.S. carriers. The device is said to be available for purchase online as well as from carrier stores, though no pricing details were mentioned.

More interesting is the alleged confirmation of the new sensors and "smart" technology Motorola will be building into the device. Examples given were flicking the phone to open the camera app, extended voice recognition services, and the ability to sense when you're driving and activating the speaker phone.