Samsung’s release of the Galaxy Gear back in September certainly set off an avalanche of activity in the wearable device market despite the questions surrounding the device’s success or lack of success on the market. The latest company to get swept up by a desire to develop and sell a smartwatch is ZTE Corp. which has announced plans to produce a device during the first quarter of 2014 with sales to commence during the second quarter. According to an official with ZTE, Lu Qianhao, the head of their handset marketing strategy, ZTE will be producing a low cost smartwatch in an effort to appeal to a broader market. At this point, the focus is primarily on the Chinese market, but Mr. Lu does indicate the company hopes to eventually expand into the U.S. and European markets later in 2014. » Read the rest
It’s amazing how popular Nexus phones are considering they get so little mainstream attention, but hardcore Android fanatics go hog wild for them. Each year around this time, Google releases their handcrafted phone to Android fanboys and fangirls all over the world. The Nexus phone usually sports a few killer specs along with a few not so killer specs. However, it’s the price that gets everyone so googley. Priced at $349 for 16GB or $399 for 32GB (both off contract and unlocked), it appears to be a tremendous value. I don’t think anyone can argue about that. The real question is if its flagship-worthy as everyone makes it out to be? You know the drill by now, hit the break and lets get started.
Sprint has officially announced some deals for the holiday season, and while they aren’t the most aggressive sales ever, it’s a good start. First on the list is the phone selection, which includes the LG G2 for $50 online and the Galaxy S 4 Mini for free, after a 50 mail-in rebate. Those deals start on Black Friday and both obviously require a two year plan.
Between the 22nd and the 27th, Sprint is offering a special to new customers. If you port your number over from any other carrier, Sprint will knock $100 off any available phone with a two-year agreement. If you port a number over and take advantage of Sprint’s One Up plan (the $0 down phone installment plan), Sprint will give you a $100 prepaid Visa card. Either way, that’s basically free money if you were considering making the switch to Sprint anyway.
Anyone thinking of taking advantage of some of these deals from Sprint? » Read the rest
It took a while for Google to finally put up the accessories for the Nexus 5 in the Play Store, but after 3 weeks of waiting, they’re all there.
Joining the wireless Qi-enabled charging pad are the new bumper cases and LG QuickCover.
The bumper cases are available in black, gray, bright red, and bright yellow and are made of a hard exterior and soft rubber lining. The cases are available for $34.99 but you unfortunately cannot purchase it as it says “Coming Soon.”
The LG QuickCover case is going for a whopping $49.99. I couldn’t justify myself spending that much on a case, but maybe that’s because I’ve never spent money on a case. (I’m one of those “I never drop my phone” people until it actually drops.) The cover comes in black and white.
Anyway, if you love protecting your precious device, go ahead and accessorize your new Nexus 5.
Source: Google Play
Google’s wireless charging pad for the Nexus 4, 5, and 7 are finally available on the Google Play Store, 3 weeks after its initial announcement. Its official name is the Nexus Wireless Charger and costs $49.99 (plus tax and shipping). Shipping time is currently listed as 1-2 days and is only available in the U.S. and Canada. Remember, although the device is listed as compatible with the Nexus 4, Nexus 5, and Nexus 7 (2013), it will work with any Qi supported device.
If you don’t mind shelling out a few extra bucks for an official Nexus branded charging pad, go ahead and buy.
Source: Google Play
According to a Nexus 7 owner over on Reddit, that device and the Nexus 10 do not have the Google Experience Launcher after receiving today’s update to Android 4.4 KitKat. As we noted last week, Google said that the Google Experience Launcher would remain exclusive to the Nexus 5 because they want “to see how users take to the Launcher on Nexus 5 before it offers it on other devices.” This Nexus 7 owner says the only changes he notices are the different icons for apps like Settings and Camera and the switch from blue to white in the notification bar. The update did not bring Google Now on the far-left of the home screen and still has the home screen count at five.
If you are a gamer, you are going to want to check out the new line of MOGA gaming controllers. These new controllers for Android are available now and step it up a notch with MOGA Boost Technology. Not only are both controllers rechargeable, but they will also charge your phone while you play. There’s nothing worse then getting hooked into a game and watching your battery drain to 0%. Now you can game till your heart’s content.
The MOGA Hero Power for $59.99 (pictured below) is the more portable offering while the MOGA Pro Power for $79.99 (pictured above) is for the more serious gamer. Both work on Android 2.3+ and are at MOGA’s website and Amazon right now. They will also be available at Best Buy, GameStop, Sprint, Target, and Verizon soon. Hit the break for full specs for each controller.
It looks like Sprint is going to be offering the Nexus 5 come November 8th, according to the press release below. The device will go for $149.99 with the Sprint Unlimited Data Guarantee for Life.
Separately, T-Mobile’s website says that the device will be available on its own service in the coming weeks. The company has a sign-up page which promises to notify you once information comes out regarding release date and price.
Wireless charging isn’t anything new when it comes to Nexus devices, and Google-branded charging pads aren’t anything new either— the Nexus 4 launched with a dock/charger for the device last year.
But this year, Google has redesigned its wireless charging pad, changing up its design and adding magnets for improved device stability.
The charger is also glossy on top, and no longer features a sticky, dust-collecting rubber finish. The new model is compatible with both the Nexus 5 and the new Nexus 7.
It’s also expected that Qi-compatible devices will also work with the pad (last year’s Nexus 4), but only phones with magnets inside of them will actually stick to the charger.
The device should be available on the Play Store online today, but pricing and shipping availability information is not yet available.
Hit the break for info on new cases from Google and LG.
It has been a trend to make “mini” versions of phones, but Samsung also started a new trending in making “rugged” versions as well. The Galaxy S 4 Active was the rugged version of the GS4. However, they already offer a mini version of the GS4, dubbed the Galaxy S 4 Mini. Now Samsung is going to combine both concepts and come out with the Galaxy S 4 Active Mini. A Samsung phone with the model number of GT-I8580 showed up at GFXBench and is believed to be the said device.
The specs include a 4.65-inch display (not so mini) with 800 x 480 resolution, a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU, Adreno 305 GPU, 1GB of RAM, 5MP rear camera, 0.3MP front-facing camera, and Android 4.2. It’s not the greatest specs in the world, but if you’re looking for something that is IP67 dust and water resistant, and is a little smaller than the Galaxy S 4 Active, this just might be your next phone.