Tag - Fascinate
Samsung Fascinate owners are reporting that Android 2.3 is starting to reach their phones through an over-the-air update. Those who received and installed the update are reporting much improved performance and a very fast GPS lock-on, even when indoors. One user posted that his Quadrant benchmark scores jumped from the 650s to 1150 just from the update.
Verizon has quietly pulled the Samsung Fascinate from its online store in what should be its complete exit. The Galaxy S phone also isn't available at retail. Only its close relative, the Continuum, is currently available and is free on a contract.
Verizon in a low-profile move said (PDF) it would update the Samsung Fascinate to Android 2.2 tomorrow, April 21. Its version would add the expected benefits, such as automatic app updating, faster web browsing, and Bluetooth voice dialing, but also bring carrier-specifc improvements. Voice search would now work in Bing, and the phone would now come preloaded with Samsung's Media Hub and Verizon's V Cast Apps as a matter of course.
Google's attempts to tighten control of Android got significantly more detail Monday with leaks from executives at its partners. The company has reportedly been putting tougher conditions on the "non-fragmentation clauses" it has to limit what OEMs can do to change the OS. Facebook, which is reportedly still working on its own version of Android despite denials, was reportedly upset that its arch-rival Google had to oversee its code, Bloomberg said.
AT&T has quietly posted a sign-up page confirming that it was hoping to get its Android users access to the Amazon Appstore. Subscribers are asked to name the model and provide an e-mail address for a notice of when access is opened up. The statement doesn't give an indication of how AT&T will solve the issue and isn't definite on timing beyond the "near future."
Samsung Canada, via its Facebook page, has announced that the Samsung Vibrant from Bell and the Samsung Captivate from Rogers will get a firmware update to Android 2.2 in mid-December. The Fascinate from Telus will receive the same upgrade early on in 2011, Samsung adds. The Galaxy S-series phones will be upgraded due to "tremendous interest," Samsung says.
Canadian wireless provider Telus announced it has added the Samsung Fascinate smartphone to its lineup and released Android 2.1 software update to the already available HTC Hero. The former sports a 4-inch Super AMOLED touchscreen, a 1GHz CPU and built-in Wi-Fi hotspot sharing feature for up to five devices. Its version should run on GSM and HSPA, however, where Verizon needs CDMA and EVDO.
Best Buy Mobile announced this week it will be the exclusive retailer of four smartphones this holiday season, confirming an earlier leak. They include a white Xperia X10, Dell Streak, HTC Surround and white Samsung Fascinate. The four are now available for pre-order in stores and online, though the Fascinate is now a store-only offering.
Consumers desperate for a white smartphone -- or a first look at Dell's Streak 5-inch mini-tablet -- have new options at Best Buy, a report on Engadget has found. Starting October 24th, customers will be able to reserve white Sony Ericsson Xperia X10s, white Samsung Fascinates or the not-white Streaks with a $50 deposit, all powered by various versions of the Android OS. The smartphones require service by AT&T (for the Xperia) or Verizon (the Fascinate); cellular service is optional with the Streak but is provided by AT&T.
Best Buy Mobile on Tuesday announced it will start a Free Phone Fridays promotion on every Friday in October, starting October 1. There will be four phones available to represent AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. They will cost nothing but will require signing a two-year contract.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE