United Kingdom gains Note 4 one week earlier than United States
The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is being made available for pre-order in the United States tomorrow, with shipments expected to start on October 17th, though AT&T plans to ship the smartphone earlier on October 14th. In the United Kingdom, pre-orders also begin tomorrow, though the stylus-equipped phablet will be on sale from October 10th.
Wide compatibility offered by new lineup for home theater and elsewhere
Today, Logitech announced it is entering the home control market with new home automation product compatibility and four new products. The new Harmony Living Home lineup gives users access to and control of a wide library of entertainment and home automation devices, all from one centralized control system.
Moto Maker UK sends e-mail with final Moto X design, not open to pre-orders
Motorola has enabled Moto Maker in the United Kingdom, offering customization of the new Moto X. Added just after the company commenced direct sales to the country via the website, the portal allows users to modify their future phone in an identical way to the United States version of the site, though unlike in the US, British customers do not get the option to actually order the device just yet.
Move essentially guarantees Sony will take massive loss on the year
Sony has revised downwards its financial guidance for the quarter, and intends to take a 180 billion yen ($1.7 billion) "impairment charge" as a result of overestimating smartphone sales. The revision will take a serious bite out of earnings, with the company now expecting to take a loss for the fiscal year of $2.1 billion dollars, versus the possibility of returning to profitability.
MacNN forum-goers anxiously awaiting the delivery of their latest, greatest iPhones have converged in the thread titled "Incoming iPhone" to discuss just where in the world the tracking numbers state their precious cargo resides. Forum members who are looking for an iPad sleeve with a spot for a power adapter that doesn't cause a bulge are conversing about the available options in a thread started by Clinically Insane member "subego" earlier this week.
New prepaid plans start at $35 with unlimited voice, text and 1GB of data
Today, a new series of tiered offerings for prepaid cellular plans were announced by Sprint. Inspired by the changing needs of wireless consumers and the need to be competitive against AT&T and Verizon, Sprint is offering plans in a different way than was announce earlier in the year. Plans have been simplified to three different base plans, giving consumers the amount of data they need.
AT&T, unlocked version of phone available, Moto 360 smartwatch back in stock
It's been a jam-packed year for Motorola so far, but it's about to get a little busier with the release of two anticipated devices. Motorola announced today that it's opening pre-orders up tomorrow for two versions of the next generation of its flagship Moto X phone, as well as the wireless Moto Hint earbud.
Large 1-inch camera sensor on back of Panasonic Lumix smartphone
Panasonic has used Photokina to launch an Android smartphone with a high-resolution image sensor powering its rear camera, similar to the Nokia Lumia 1020. The Lumix CM1 boasts a 1-inch 20-megapixel sensor paired with an f/2.8 Leica lens, capable of recording 4K video, with the camera functionality supported by a mechanical shutter and manual controls.
Motorola starts directly selling Moto G from UK website
Motorola has updated its online store in the United Kingdom, giving citizens the ability to directly purchase devices directly from the manufacturer, rather than diverting sales to retailers. The updated site, spotted by Pocket-Lint, stocks the second-generation Moto G for £150 ($), with separate pages offering to register visitors for updates for the Moto 360 and new Moto X. Moto Maker is expected to become available on the UK site in the near future.
Android One aims to create $100 smartphones for emerging markets
Google has used an event in India to launch the first smartphones under the Android One program. The project aims to create low-cost devices, running on stock Android with updates coming from Google directly, in order to provide people in emerging markets access to hardware and software already prevalent in developed regions.
Unlocked, unbranded version of updated Moto X said to be on the way
Motorola will be bringing out a version of its updated Moto X with a stock installation of Android, according to a report. Just like the Google Play Edition of the original Moto X, the 2014 edition of the smartphone is said to have a "Pure Edition" on the way, with the device believed to ship unlocked, unbranded, and without any extra software typically loaded onto smartphones by carriers.
AT&T to follow T-Mobile, Sprint in providing Wi-Fi calling capabilities
AT&T will be bringing Wi-Fi calling to its network, though customers will have to wait until 2015. The president and CEO of AT&T's Mobile and Business Solutions group Ralph de la Vega claimed that the technology will be made available to customers, but not until the carrier has worked to prevent calls from dropping on the service.
Low-end SoCs intended for emerging LTE markets, areas still locked into 3G service
Instead of ushering in a new high-end, power packed chips, system-on-chip (SoC), maker Qualcomm announced this week that it's releasing two new processors aimed at the entry-level device market. The new processors, branded the Snapdragon 210 and 208, are being made to help the spread of sub-$100 devices in growing LTE markets, while also continuing to support areas on the verge of moving past 3G.
Four Android apps brought to Chromebook operating system, more on the way
People waiting for their favorite Android applications to work on Chrome OS might not need to wait much longer. Today, Google announced the first set of Android apps available for Chromebooks. The move makes good on a demonstration from Google I/O, which teased the idea of Android apps running on Chrome OS through an app runtime.
Program similar to Sony's PlayStation Now tiered rental service in the United States
Japanese video game publisher Square Enix announced a new initiative this week, putting some of its most popular games in the hands of mobile device users. The new program, called Dive In, allows users to rent Square Enix titles through a dedicated application ,and play them on their Android or iOS tablets and smartphones.
London-based startup to bolster BlackBerry's BYOD programs
BlackBerry has announced that it has acquired Movirtu, a UK-based startup pioneering virtual-SIM technology, allowing a single device to have multiple phone numbers associated with it. The buy would bring technology for a "bring-your-own-device" user to have one device spanning a business number with associated apps and contacts, and a personal contact number on the same phone without juggling multiple SIM cards.
Lack of AT&T exclusivity of budget Fire Phone in US allegedly at issue
AT&T may have prevented Amazon from creating a second, lower-cost smartphone, according to a report. The retailer was apparently working with HTC on such a device, but the carrier was apparently unhappy with the terms of the partnership, wanting exclusivity of both devices in the United States, rather than just of the higher-specification Fire Phone.
No replacement launch date indicated, could be tied to lack of government approval
The New York Times reported today that Apple has informed the big three carriers and retail stores in China that the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will not be launched in the country on the September 19 release date. Executives at the carriers said that the manufacturer didn't inform them why the phones were delayed, but it came to shock -- as advertising campaigns were put in place touting the same release date as the United States.
Initiative to make as many users as possible able to use Wi-Fi calling
At today's latest "Uncarrier" event, wireless provider T-Mobile has unveiled a series of programs to kick-start Wi-Fi calling across its network. The carrier has revealed that every smartphone it sells going forward will be capable of Wi-Fi calling. Additionally, it is launching an initiative to provide a 802.11ac Wi-Fi router for free to Simple Choice plan users who own a smartphone capable of Wi-Fi calling. Finally, T-Mobile is short-cycling its Jump program, and allowing users not eligible for a yearly upgrade to buy a new Wi-Fi calling-capable device.
Leaked document also claims Windows Phone to be replaced by Windows brand
Microsoft may start producing mobile devices without the Nokia branding by the end of this year. An alleged leaked internal document from Microsoft Mobile, the Devices and Services arm of Nokia acquired by the company, apparently shows that both the Nokia and Windows Phone names will be replaced on new smartphones with Microsoft and Windows respectively.
Budget Alcatel OneTouch smartphones go on sale at T-Mobile
Two more Alcatel OneTouch smartphones have surfaced, following its IFA launches with the pair of budget-priced mobile devices heading to T-Mobile. The Fierce 2 has a 5-inch 960x540 display and a quad-core 1.2GHz processor, while the lower-specification Evolve 2 has a smaller four-inch WVGA display with a dual-core 1.3GHz processor.
New plan avoids sales tax, allows upgrades every 24 months
Sprint has announced a new option for iPhone users or potential buyers on its network with a new program, "iPhone for Life," that allows users to rent, rather than purchase, an iPhone model and routinely upgrade it every two years by simply adding $20 per month to their existing or new plan. New Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure explained that the $20 monthly fee would be for a base model, but customers save on financing or paying full price on the device by avoiding sales tax.
Electronista, MacNN staff discuss the new announcements from the fall event
A great deal of conversation between the MacNN and Electronista staff happens behind the scenes, especially when something like keynotes are ongoing. This week's annual Apple mobile announcement is no different. Writers Mike and Jordan, along with editor Charles, tackle some of the issues surrounding the mass-media Apple reveal that Tim Cook helmed today, showing the iPhone 6 family, and the Apple Watch.
Carrier claims Huawei built its own testing machine based on stolen information, parts
Wireless carrier T-Mobile USA has filed a lawsuit against Huawei, alleging that the Chinese phone manufacturer stole a number of trade secrets relating to the carrier's phone-testing robot. In the suit filed with a federal court on September 2, the company claims that employees of Huawei took pictures of T-Mobile's "Tappy" robot, attempted to steal components, and tried to sneak back into the testing facility in Washington after they were banned.
UK, Germany first European countries to receive Amazon smartphone
Amazon has lowered the cost of the Fire Phone in the United States, down to 99 cents on a two-year contract. At the same time, the retailer revealed it is bringing the Fire Phone to Europe, with the United Kingdom and Germany set to be the first markets on the continent to receive the device at the end of this month.
BlackBerry Q20 shows classic design lines of earlier BBOS devices
The BlackBerry Classic has allegedly resurfaced following its announcement at Mobile World Congress in February, with images of the device appearing on Weibo. The smartphone, also known as the Q20, appears to be shown in the photographs with a square display similar to the BlackBerry Passport, though its physical design has rounded corners and a general appearance similar to earlier BlackBerry devices.
Sprint adds 15 more carriers to Rural Roaming Preferred Provider program
Sprint has expanded the area its LTE service operates in, by working with smaller carriers. The company has increased the number of carriers included within its Rural Roaming Preferred Provider program by 15, with the program's 27 carriers expanding Sprint's service in 27 states, over 565,000 square miles, and to more than 38 million people.
Share gain seen coming from Android, even as new iPhones imminent
Apple continues to be the market leader in smartphones in the US, the latest three-month study from ComScore MobiLens shows. As of the end of July, the iPhone line had gained a full percentage point of share over its position in April. Arch-rival Samsung also grew its share of the US market, but by somewhat less at 0.7 percent change. Drops from other Android makers such as HTC, Motorola and LG seem to have given Apple a boost, even as the debut of new iPhones draws near.
Macnn and Electronista weekly deals for September 5, 2014
It's that time of the week again! Every Friday afternoon, we're going to take a look at sales, and bring you what we think are some of the best deals on prime apps, gadgets, and peripherals for you, the discriminating MacNN and Electronista reader. All prices are verified at the time of publication, and any sales may not be valid if you're reading a few days down the line. Check pricing before you click buy. We do add deals over the weekend, so keep checking!
LG G Watch R will have October release, cost more than G Watch
The LG G Watch R, the round-faced sequel to the G Watch, will be shipping in October, the company has revealed. Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, a spokesperson declined to state how much exactly the Plastic OLED-based Android Wear device will cost when it goes on sale next month, but did advise it would be more expensive than the $230 price the original launched with.
Rear camera of new Moto G upgraded to 8MP, front camera to 2MP
Motorola has launched its second attempt at the Moto X's budget-friendly stablemate, the Moto G. Just like the updated Moto X, the new Moto G bears the same name as its predecessor, though unlike the flagship, Motorola has made more modest changes to the smartphone, with some of the internal specifications remain unaltered.
Rear 13MP camera of new Moto X has surrounding ring flash
Motorola's sequel to the Moto X has been unveiled with a number of improvements on the original, but retaining the same name. The new Moto X has a slightly larger 5.2-inch AMOLED screen with an upgraded 1080p resolution, backed by a quad-core Snapdragon 801 clocked at 2.5GHz, an Adreno 330 GPU, and 2GB of RAM.
Two-prong filings with FTC and courts seek injunction, damages
Graphic processor manufacturer Nvidia has filed suit against Qualcomm and Samsung, accusing both of patent abuse. In a conference call about the suit, Nvidia Chief Executive Jen-Hsun Huang said that "they're using our technology for free in their devices today and they're shipping an enormous number of devices." Nvidia is seeking a sales and importation embargo on Samsung devices using PowerVR architectures, as well as anything using a Qualcomm graphical chipset.
LTE-equipped Cat S50 has 4.7-inch 720p display, curated app store
Cat, a brand better known for the heavy-duty industrial equipment, has unveiled another smartphone just three months after the Cat B15Q was launched. The Cat S50 is a ruggedized Android KitKat device fitted with a 4.7-inch 1280x720 display protected with Gorilla Glass 3, with the IP67-certified LTE device able to survive against dust, submergence, and the occasional impact.
IFA Alcatel OneTouch launches powered by octa-core processors
Alcatel OneTouch has increased its Hero device range by two at IFA, with a smartphone and a tablet joining the roster. The Hero 2 Android smartphone is powered by an octa-core 2GHz processor behind a 6-inch 1080p display, while the Hero 8 is a tablet with an eight-inch 1920x1200 screen, also backed by a MediaTek octa-core processor.
Second Huawei IFA smartphone launch shows Ascend G7 with metal body
Huawei's second smartphone launch at its IFA event is a more modest device in comparison to the Ascend Mate 7. The Ascend G7 is an LTE-equipped smartphone with a 5.5-inch 1280x720 display, and though it has specifications making it a mid-ranged device, Huawei has attempted to make it more attractive by using a metal body with relatively few plastic sections.
Ascend Mate 7 catches up with other flagships, adds fingerprint scanner
Huawei has updated the Ascend Mate smartphone line, with the release of the Ascend Mate 7. The phablet, announced at IFA today, has a six-inch 1080p display packed into its 185g (6.5 ounces), 7.9mm-thick (0.31 inches) aluminum body, giving the smartphone a pixel density of 367ppi and extremely thin bezels on either side of the screen.
$40 plan doubles data from 500MB to 1GB
T-Mobile-owned MetroPCS has announced several important changes, the most important being the loosening of its 4G data caps. Customers on the carrier's $40-per-month plan are getting their cap raised from 500MB to 1GB. The $50 plan is getting a similar boost, from 2.5GB to 3GB.
Lenovo Vibe Z2, Vibe X2 have high-resolution front cameras
Lenovo has extended its Vibe smartphone line with two new Android devices at the company's IFA media event today. The Vibe X2 has a unique multi-layered case design and packs a MediaTek True8Core processor, while the Vibe Z2 is the company's first 64-bit smartphone with a thin 7.8mm (0.3 inches) brushed metal unibody case.
Lumia Selfie app preinstalled on Lumia 730, Lumia 735
Aside from the Lumia 830, Microsoft revealed two other Nokia-branded Lumia devices at IFA. The Lumia 735 and the Lumia 730 Dual SIM differ in terms of the number of SIM cards they each hold, but are effectively the same smartphone, with both using the same 4.7-inch 1,280x720 OLED display and quad-core 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400 processor.
Rear 10MP PureView camera used in Lumia 830
Part of a launch of three smartphones at its IFA event, Microsoft revealed the Lumia 830. Offering a 5.5-inch 1280x720 display, the Windows Phone device is billed by the company as an "affordable flagship," with the aluminum-framed smartphone packing a rear 10-megapixel PureView camera aided with various camera app functions in the accompanying Lumia Denim software update.
Mid-ranged HTC Desire 820 has 13MP rear camera, 8MP front imaging sensor
HTC launched its second 64-bit device at IFA, following the Desire 510 launched last month. The Desire 820 could be considered the successor to the Desire 816 and will be shipping with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 onboard, a 1.5GHz octa-core processor capable of 64-bit processing, something which could aid its performance when the next version of Android is released.
Cross DJ for Android updated, adds controller compatibility, record and sharing on Mixcloud, SoundCl
DJing app Cross DJ has updated its Android version, now enabling external controllers and other features. Users can now connect their Android device to the U-Mix Control-Pro, a MIDI controller that has all Cross DJ controls mapped onto it. When using the controller users can browse, scratch, sync tracks, add effects and more.
Is the Galaxy Note 4 or the Galaxy Note Edge the star of the show?
Samsung launched the next iteration of its Note phablet series today, the Galaxy Note 4, but that model's almost incremental updates weren't what stole the show here at the New York launch event, timed simultaneously with launches in Beijing and Berlin. Rather, the real excitement was generated by the newly-launched Galaxy Note Edge. Electronista got its hands on with both devices, and found a great deal to like about each, and some quibbles.
New line all Playstation 4 remote compatible, waterproofed
Sony Mobile Communications today introduced its new Xperia Z series flagship smartphones -- the Xperia Z3 and Xperia Z3 Compact. The former is a 5.2-inch phone, and the latter a 4.6-incher, but both come with similar internals. The company claims that both are waterproofed, have "enhanced camera experiences and applications," and have an up to two-day battery life. Also debuted was the Xperia Z3 Tablet compact, the only tablet with PlayStation 4 Remote Play.
Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Edge launch at Unpacked event
Samsung's Unpacked 2014 Episode 2 event at IFA has concluded, and has seen the launch of multiple devices from the company. The expected Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is joined by the Galaxy Edge, a previously-rumored smartphone which adds a small display over the side of the device. While Samsung has already revealed the Gear S smartwatch, it has also formally unveiled its Gear VR virtual reality headset which pairs with the Samsung Galaxy Note 4.
New headset leverages GPU, CPU of Galaxy Note 4
Samsung Electronics today introduced what it calls the next generation in wearable technology, the Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition. The result of a partnership with Facebook's Oculus, John Carmack took the stage with Samsung to introduce the new product at today's IFA press conference battery. The device resembles the second edition of the Oculus Rift closely, and has a 96 degree field of view, with a less than 20 microsecond motion-to-photon latency, nearly half that of the original.
Galaxy Note 4 has Octa-core processor option for some markets
Samsung's expected reveal of the Galaxy Note at its Unpacked 2014 Episode 2 event at IFA has confirmed earlier rumors of its high-resolution display. The phablet's 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display equals the size of its predecessor, but Samsung has boosted the resolution to Quad HD, 2,560x1,440, with a claimed 90-percent Adobe RGB color gamut and Gorilla Glass protection.
Device, teased for months, has independent 'edge' screen
Alongside the new Galaxy Note 4 "phablet," Samsung also unveiled the often-teased Galaxy Note Edge smartphone. As previously expected, the Edge has a pair of screens, with the "edge" screen extending all the way to the edge of the case.
New watch features 'premium' materials, Android Wear, wireless charging
Asus Corporate Vice President Eric Chen today went on stage at a pre-IFA 2014 event to announce the company's latest lineup of innovations, including Asus ZenWatch, the company's first wearable device produced in partnership with Google. Asus ZenWatch is the first wearable device from the company, is powered by Android Wear, and features a version of the Asus ZenUI user interface developed specifically for the product.