Adverse weather conditions slows production, shipping of smartphones
Deliveries of the Moto G and Moto X to customers in the United States have been delayed, because of adverse weather conditions. The manufacturing and shipping facility in Fort Worth, Texas was affected by "Winter Storm Dion," with the snow causing significant transportation issues for finished goods as well as for Motorola employees.
New RAM can retain data for a minimum of 800 hours at 200C
Memory solutions provider Adesto Technologies has specified the high-temperature data retention characteristics of its proprietary resistive random-access memory technology known as CBRAM in a paper presented at the 2013 International Electron Devices Meeting in Washington, DC earlier today. The paper examines the challenges high-temperature represents to non-volatile resistive memories, and shows how the new kind of RAM overcomes these challenges while preserving the speed, low-voltage and ultra-low power characteristics inherent to the form.
Microsoft looking to grow Windows share in mobile
Microsoft is considering releasing both Windows Phone and Windows RT for free in future versions as a way of pushing back against the dominance of Google's Android platform in the mobile segment. This according to The Verge, which cites unnamed sources within the company saying that the move to push the two platforms on a license-free model could happen when the software giant pushes its next revision of the Windows platform, Windows Threshold. The move would mark a considerable change for Microsoft, which has for decades relied on the licensing of its Windows operating system for a large portion of its revenue.
In discussions with four more manufacturers for Ubuntu mobile OS
A smartphone running on Ubuntu Touch will be available in 2014, according to Canonical founder and product strategy leader Mark Shuttleworth. Canonical has signed an agreement with an unnamed manufacturer to have the Linux distribution put onto high-end smartphones, with other manufacturers also apparently in talks to do likewise.
Mystery Nokia leak claimed to run forked Android
More signs of Nokia's Android development have allegedly surfaced, with a report claiming that one device that surfaced in late November is the fruit of Nokia's Android labor. The "Normandy" is said to be running on Android, more specifically a forked version of the mobile operating system, in a similar vein to Amazon and the Fire OS used in the Kindle Fire tablet range.
Asus working with major US operator on second-quarter release
Asus has launched its rumored PadFone Mini in Taiwan, as well as revealing that part of the PadFone range will be making its way to the United States in the future. The smartphone and tablet-dock system seen in earlier, larger iterations is now available as a 4.3-inch 960x540-resolution smartphone that combines with a tablet with a 7-inch 1,280x800 display.
Chennai plant seized by tax authority, Nokia offers deposit to release assets
Some confusion exists in India about back taxes owed by Nokia, which is potentially complicating the Microsoft purchase of the embattled cellphone manufacturer. An Indian court has stayed a hearing about a seizure of a factory in Chennai, and is seeking additional information from the cellphone manufacturer on the value of the facility. Additionally, various accounts claim that Nokia owes either 20.8 billion, 78 billion, or 210 billion rupees ($400 million, $1.28 billion, or $3.4 billion respectively) in taxes to the Indian government.
Technology allows multiplexing of LTE bands, faster downloads
Sprint announced it will begin delivery of the Samsung Galaxy S4 with the enhanced LTE Sprint Spark to its sales channels in the next few weeks. Sprint Spark allows tri-band devices, like the the S4, to support active hands-off mode between 800MHz, 1.9GHz and 2.5GHz, and provide data session continuity as the devices move between spectrum bands.
Remarks about subsidy future, upcoming market targets made in NYC
Addressing a friendly crowd of investors in New York City, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson noted that with cellphone adoption at 75 percent and climbing, networks would likely soon stop offering large subsidies for devices. The move comes on the heels of AT&T's new pricing plan, that offers customers discounts of up to $15 per month if users retain an older device, rather than upgrade it after two years of use.
New Google Play editions of LG tablet, Sony phablet
Google on Tuesday revealed two new additions to its Google Play Editions line of devices, the Z Ultra from Sony and the G Pad 8.3 from LG. The two new devices sport the same hardware as their normal counterparts, but they run an unskinned, "pure" version of Android and will receive updates to Google's operating system faster than the standard manufacturer versions. Google also showed off a white version of its new Nexus 7 tablet.
Super-sized stylus phone sees quick sales
Samsung's Galaxy Note 3 is off to an even faster sales pace than its predecessors, ships 10 million units in just two months since its release. A post from Samsung placed the Note 3 in a line with 13 other 10 million unit-shipping devices reaching back to 2002. The announcement also marks the Note 3 as the seventh consecutive Samsung flagship device to ship 10 million units or more, a trend that began with the original Galaxy S.
Screen video recording app from CyanogenMod team enters beta
The latest build of CyanogenMod brings Android 4.4 to a number of devices, including a number that have yet to receive the KitKat treatment. The team has also announced that it is adding automatic encryption of text messages to its builds, as well as introducing a new app that records a video of actions performed on the smartphone's display.
New chipset allows for inexpensive worldwide 4G handset
Qualcomm today announced the Snapdragon 410 chipset with integrated 4G LTE World Mode. The new Snapdragon 410 chipsets are manufactured using a 28nm process technology and feature processors that are 64-bit capable -- the first since Apple leapfrogged its rivals with the 64-bit A7 -- along with accelerated graphics performance with the Adreno 306 GPU, 1080p video playback, and up to a 13 megapixel camera. Snapdragon 410 chipsets integrate 4G LTE and 3G cellular connectivity for all major modes and frequency bands across the globe and include support for Dual and Triple SIM.
Settlement offer includes comprehensive gag order preventing follow-up
Following a fire that severely damaged a YouTube user's Samsung Galaxy S4, the user -- known as "Ghostlyrich" -- posted a video complaining about the defect and potential danger. The Korean manufacturer, in a reply, demanded proof that the device was damaged in the manner that the user reported, prior to any replacement or repair offer being made. "Ghostlyrich" uploaded a second video in response showing the damage, with a melted case and visibly damaged internal hardware. In a settlement offer mailed to the user, Samsung demanded the video be removed before it would send out a replacement, with other extreme terms for settling the case.
Threat of antitrust investigation by EC if Nokia overreaches with patents
Nokia has been warned by the European Commission (EC) to avoid becoming a "patent troll," once the company completes the sale of its Devices and Services arm to Microsoft. Joaquin Almunia, head of competition and vice president of the EC, reconfirmed the Commission's approval of the purchase, but advised that there is a danger that Nokia could try to "extract higher returns" from its patent portfolio.
Smartphone with Galaxy S4 exterior, Galaxy Note 3 interior expands reach
Samsung has expanded the availability of the Galaxy J smartphone outside of Japan, with the first recipient being Taiwan. Originally built for the Japanese market, the Galaxy J has received some slight alterations to allow it to work in Taiwan, such as adding support for local 4G LTE, with the rest of the device effectively remaining the same as when it was originally released.
Keyboard-equipped LG smartphone for T-Mobile similar to LG Enact
A new sliding smartphone is on the way from LG, and is heading to T-Mobile, according to a new leak. Reportedly named the LG Optimus F3Q, the smartphone is shown in an alleged press image to have a full QWERTY keyboard hidden behind the display, and could end up being the equivalent of a keyboard-equipped Optimus F3.
Bandwidth increase in North Dallas uses MetroPCS spectrum
T-Mobile is putting the spectrum gained from its merger with MetroPCS to good use, by upgrading the bandwidth of its LTE spectrum in North Dallas. News of the speed increase comes at the same time as details of a new data-less price plan are revealed, one which the carrier is launching in the United States later today.
Twitter bringing microblogging to entry-level mobile phones
Popular microblogging service Twitter is working to bring its 140-character messaging to mobile phone users whose devices don't have access to the Internet. Reuters on Thursday reported that the company was working with U2opia Mobile, a Singapore-based startup, to bring Twitter content to non-smartphones in the near future. Via a simple process, users will be able to download the latest data from Twitter directly to their phones.
Older models being traded in hints at strong wave of new-model upgraders
Online trade-in site Gazelle has reported that iPad trade-ins for cash jumped 175 percent over normal on the weekend of Black Friday, a certain indicator that Apple CEO Tim Cook's prediction that it would be an "iPad Christmas" is likely to come true. The Apple tablet, which continues to dominate the category three and a half years after its introduction, has also topped holiday wish list compilations and has seen some constrained supplies of the two latest models, particularly the Retina iPad mini.
US first to see changes
Google has redesigned the Android and iOS versions of its News web app with a variety of improvements. The look of the app has been cleaned up to make it easier to read and track different stories, and it can now be customized with light or dark themes, adjustable font sizes, and/or bigger story cards that include more content. Navigation has been streamlined by funneling access to every section, including customized ones, through a News icon in the top left; Google Feedback can be reached through a menu in the upper right.
Oppo said to prep superphone with Find 7
Oppo may have its eye on becoming the first smartphone manufacturer to take advantage of the latest and greatest chip technology from Qualcomm, packing a Snapdragon 805 into the forthcoming Find 7. Additionally, GizChina reports, the new device could pack a 2K display, delivering one of the highest-resolution screens on any handheld device. The handset will also apparently have 4G connectivity, which will greatly help it compete in the Chinese market.
Wireless spectrum purchase put to use by Verizon in cities
Even though the carrier is undergoing a restructuring of ownership, Verizon Wireless has managed to improve its LTE network in a number of cities. The carrier has reportedly increased the amount of bandwidth available to customers, with some markets seeing Verizon tripling its LTE capacity, thanks to its earlier $3.9 billion wireless spectrum purchase.
Smaller device combination uses 4.3-inch smartphone, 7-inch tablet
Asus is launching a smaller version of its combinable smartphone and tablet-dock device range in the very near future. Invitations have been sent out to the media for a launch event in Taiwan on Wednesday, 11th of December, with the invitation naming the Padfone Mini outright as the device being shown off by the company.
Android, iOS, Windows all gain share at BlackBerry's expense
Apple's share of the smartphone market in the US continues to grow slowly, though chief rival Samsung is growing at a faster rate but still has a long way to go to catch up. Android sales combined continue to dominate, but have seen very slow or flat growth in recent months -- however, in the latest three-month ComScore MobiLens survey, the platform managed twice the growth rate of iOS. Windows Phone also gained share, with all three platforms benefitting from BlackBerry's continuing fall.
Three months in, almost all users on iOS 7 or iOS 6
A new report posted by Apple itself on its iOS developer portal says that, less than three months after its debut, iOS 7 is now on 74 percent of all the company's mobile devices -- an astonishing adoption rate unrivalled in the industry. Users still on iOS 6 make up about 22 percent of the base, meaning 96 percent of iOS users are running OS versions no more than a year old. By comparison, only around half of Android users are on a 4.x version (first released in mid-2012), with only 1.1 percent on the latest iteration.
HTC One available as low as $25 per month
HTC Is now offering its HTC One flagship handset for $0 down on an installment plan. The manufacturer unveiled on Thursday a new page touting the offer, which works much like purchasing a phone through a carrier with no money down. Customers submit to a credit check, and if their credit checks out, they can get HTC's flagship device for as little as $25 per month.
New protocol brings LTE co-existence, aids developers
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group today announced the adoption of updates to the Bluetooth Core Specification. The updates will improve consumer usability with increased co-existence support for LTE and bulk data exchange rates. The new release will also aid developer innovation by allowing devices to support multiple roles simultaneously, and also lays the groundwork for IP-based connections -- extending Bluetooth technology's role in device communication.
Apps were previously English-only
Google has updated its Android and iOS Search apps with voice support for French, German, and Japanese. The upgrades let people both speak commands and hear responses in the new languages. Previously, non-English speakers had to type in any search requests.
Camera app overhauled and optimized
Google has reportedly focused on Nexus 5 camera functionality with the upcoming Android 4.4.1 update, which is expected to begin rolling out this week. The software tweaks promise to resolve problems with the current camera, improving autofocus time and exposure in low-light conditions.
Aereo launching cloud DVR service in Baltimore on December 16
Aereo has revealed that it will be launching its cloud-based DVR service in Baltimore in time for Christmas. Residents in the Baltimore metropolitan area, including 11 central Maryland counties, will be able to sign up and subscribe to the service when it goes live on December 16th, though this will still leave Aereo considerably short of its goal of expanding to 22 US cities before the end of this year.
Special conditions apply
AT&T has introduced Mobile Share Value Plans, a new discount option for its subscribers. The option cuts significant amounts per month off of a Mobile Share plan, so long as a customer meets certain criteria: people must have an off-contract phone, or else upgrade through AT&T's Next program. Under these scenarios, a person can save between $10 and $115 per month on a single device, and between $20 and $105 on a two-device account. Two phones on a 4GB plan, for instance, costs $120 per month.
Lighter Pantech phablet denies secret file viewing at an angle
Pantech has expanded its Vega range with another smartphone that can read fingerprints. The Vega Secret Up has a smaller 5.6-inch 1080p display compared to the Vega Secret Note, and while it has relatively similar internal specifications, there are a few small changes to make it slightly cheaper than its recent predecessor.
Amazon offers free storage for Note 3, S4, G2
Amazon is offering customers 50GB of free online storage when they purchase an on-contract Android smartphone through its marketplace. The storage is handled through Amazon's Cloud Drive service, which lets users store photos, files, music, and more. Amazon has more than 100 smartphones eligible for the offer, all listed on its site.
$130 million in cash and stock shares to exchange hands
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved Verizon's $130 billion buyout of Vodaphone's share of Verizon Wireless. The ruling paves the way for Verizon's complete ownership of the wireless business when all aspects of the transaction are concluded in the first half of 2014.
European Commission finds minimal overlap between Microsoft, Nokia
Microsoft has been given the all-clear to acquire Nokia's mobile phone business by the European Commission (EC). The clearance by the regulatory body comes just one day after the US Department of Justice approved the deal, two weeks after Nokia's shareholders made a similar decision, leaving little in the way of obstructions left for the $7.2 billion deal.
First-gen iPad mini, iPhone 5c also see surges
iPad Air activations grew some 51 percent over the previous weekend during the course of Black Friday and the rest of the Thanksgiving weekend, according to new Localytics data. The figure is based on the number of new devices that appeared in Localytics tracking for some 20,000 apps. The iPhone 5c and first-generation iPad mini also did well, each growing by 26 percent.
Sale price available today and Monday
Following technical difficulties on Cyber Monday, Motorola has extended the holiday promotion for its Moto X handset. The company's flagship smartphone is available today and Monday for just $349, marking a $150 savings, with full customization options via the Moto Maker site, though today's stock appears to be sold out.
Dual-screen YotaPhone will expand availability in early 2014
Yota Devices has started shipping its dual-screened YotaPhone, a smartphone that sports a pair of displays. On the front is a typical 4.3-inch 720x1280-resolution LCD screen, while on the back is a 360x640 e-paper display, one which can be used to read ebooks, display signs or messages, or even as a low-power alternative to the LCD screen when the battery needs to be recharged.
Issued licenses allow for 4G LTE cellular usage in China
The three major carriers in China have been issued licenses to operate TD-LTE networks in the country. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has provided the licenses to China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom today, which opens the door to Chinese mobile users being able to use faster mobile connections in the future.
Three removes roaming charges for UK users in US, Indonesia, Macau, Sri Lanka
British carrier Three has expanded its Feel At Home scheme to four more countries. Subscribers visiting the United States, Indonesia, Macau, and Sri Lanka will be able to use their call, text, and data allowances in the same way they already do at home, without any extra roaming charges. The carrier also advised that it would be rolling out its 4G service to customers throughout the winter, and aims to have all subscribers with a 4G-capable device able to use its 4G network by the end of the first quarter of 2014.
New technology allows for screen casting, better multiple device development
Google has released an update to its Chrome 32 beta browser today, adding significant improvements to its development tools for mobile. The new update allows developers to construct mobile apps that will run in the Chrome browser, loading content on mobile without leaving the development environment. The improvement facilitates viewing the app on multiple devices, insuring proper usability cross-platform.
UK ban proceedings may have leaked M8 launch
A judge in the United Kingdom appears to have confirmed a February launch windows for HTC's follow-up to this year's HTC One flagship. In the same proceedings that marked a ban on the HTC One Mini in the UK, BGR reports that Judge Richard Arnold pointed to a possible February 2014 launch for HTC's next flagship device. This is in keeping with previous rumors on the device's availability, but it is the most specific of any leaks, and appears based on internal information.
Taiwan's Catcher said to sculpt metal Galaxy S5
Samsung's follow-up to the Galaxy S4 may finally adopt a metal chassis, and the latest rumor has Samsung relying on the company responsible for the body of both the iPad mini and HTC's One to make it. PhoneArena reported Tuesday on a new rumor out of Taiwan that Samsung is looking to metal chassis producer Catcher to begin production of the Galaxy S5's body some time in December. Reportedly, the South Korean tech giant has called on the Taiwanese casing maker to produce between 10 and 30 million units for the forthcoming flagship.
Capped bills for stolen phones, early termination clauses in new agreement
Customers of mobile phone networks in the United Kingdom will be better protected from high bills after their phone is lost or stolen. EE, Virgin Media, Vodafone, and Three have all signed up to a government agreement that will, among other obligations, place a cap of £50 ($82) on the customer's liability for usage from the time the phone is reported as stolen.
HTC One spared from sales injunction, Nokia seeks financial compensation
HTC will no longer be allowed to sell the One Mini in the United Kingdom from the end of this week onwards. Judge Richard Arnold has ruled that chips used in the HTC One Mini infringed on a patent owned by Nokia, with a sales injunction on the device coming into effect from December 6th, though stopped short of doing the same for the HTC One.
Persistent security claims by US officials behind market exit
Huawei is planning to pull out of the United States, according to an interview with CEO Ren Zhengfei. The head of the company is effectively giving up on the US market, following two years of criticism and intense scrutiny by the US government, along with accusations that the telecommunications company is helping the Chinese government spy on US citizens and businesses.
TomTom's GPS watches' new MySports mobile app, offering easy data upload
TomTom, a GPS gadget producer, has announced its latest software release to compliment its GPS watches. TomTom MySports offers flexibility to runners, cyclists and swimmers in respects to their interactions with their performance data. Users of the Sports Watch can upload and access their key performance information to the app without needing to connect to a computer.
Big Cyber Monday deals found from TigerDirect, Best Buy
Cyber Monday has finally arrived, and online shoppers can take advantage of big sales this holiday season. We've gathered up some great deals on a variety of electronics, including TVs, smartphones, e-readers, tablets and hard drives.
Similar BenQ smartphones differ in processor choice, rear camera
Display manufacturer BenQ has rejoined the smartphone industry, by introducing a pair of quad-core devices in Taiwan. The F3 and A3 are both entry-level Android devices with similar 4.5-inch 960x540-resolution IPS displays, and though they both share the same external design and similar internal specifications, the two differ in terms of processor and rear cameras.