Sprint adding a $10 dollar data charge on all smartphones

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Been thinking about getting yourself a shiny new EVO? Well, be prepared to add an extra $10 on your monthly data plan. That’s right folks, Sprint has announced that they are adding a $10 dollar data charge on ALL smartphones in addition to whatever phone plan you decide to go with.

So, why the extra coin? Sprint is saying it will assist them “in offering simple and affordable unlimited plans for its customers while maintaining a wireless network able to meet the growing appetite for a richer mobile experience.” Basically they’re pulling the ‘ol “bandwidth is expensive, so we’re going to charge you more” card.

Continue after the break for the full presser, and leave us a comment and share your thoughts about this rate hike.

LG’s G-Slate, While 4G Only in the US, Might Hit UK in Other Flavors

As we mentioned yesterday, T-Mobile will be soon be launching the LG G-Slate, a Honeycomb-flavored tablet. Here in the states, T-Mobile is kicking it off with 4G capabilities. We had not heard anything concrete about it having any other varieties when it launched elsewhere, but based on a half-statement planning team director James Choi made (before being interrupted), it is thought that this tablet may be showing up in other forms when it hits the UK, though we’re not sure whether that means 3G, wifi only, or one of each. We’ll know more at the Mobile World Congress next month.

“For the iPad, you have the Wi-Fi version, the 3G version, different kinds of versions. I’ll put it this way, even if the 4G version isn’t in the UK…” – James Choi

[via EWeekEurope]

T-Mobile USA presenting strategy plan to parent Deutsche Telekom – business issues

TMobile

What is T-Mobile’s strategy for bringing on new customers and keeping existing customers? That apparently is the hot topic of discussion set to possibly take place overseas in Europe next week when T-Mobile USA CEO Philip Humm and Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile USA parent company) CEO Rene Obermann meet with some higher ups.

No doubt they will discuss why T-Mobile is rated 4th operator in the US, while seeing profits drop. But what will they do about it? Many can speculate, but really, they need to figure out a way to drive the message to their current customers that they should stay, and to new customers that they have something better to offer than other carriers in the US. People can’t be fooled for too long in this age of communication, so commercials about how facetime videochat is better on T-Mobile will only work for so long.

What do you think they need to do in order to keep business rising? How can they increase profits without the customer needing to pay more?

[via TmoNews]

AT&T updates site with their 4G service and devices

AT&T has put together a trendy, and playful advertising campaign promoting their upcoming 4G service and devices.  While AT&T doesn’t quite have their LTE 4G service available yet, they have gone ahead and readied HSPA+ for the soon to be released 4G devices that we recently heard about at CES 2011.

AT&T claims their HSPA+ will run 4x faster then current HSPA (3G) speeds, and will be available everywhere 3G currently exists on their network.  They also are making sure you know that you can talk and surf simultaneously.

Hardware wise, they have thrown up the big three 4G Android devices coming soon to AT&T – the HTC Inspire 4G, Motorola Atrix 4G, and the Samsung Infuse 4G, as well as their USB 4G-capable modem, called the AT&T USBConnect Shockwave.  Not to shabby a line-up, and while we’d love to have LTE 4G now, it’s still a decent strategic plan to have HSPA+ 4G now.  Check out all the details in the source link below.

[via AT&T]

T-Mobile G2 free through January 20 with a new 2-year contract

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T-Mobile has announced via Twitter that they are offering the G2 for free between now and January 20th if you sign up for a new 2-year contract and if you order online. The G2 may not be as coveted as the MyTouch 4G for example, but it is still a powerful device with a processor that, although it is only 800MHz, can out benchmark a Nexus One.

If you want to take advantage of this offer, hit up the source link below before the 20th.

[via T-Mobile]

Galaxy S: Why No Froyo Updates In the US? Perhaps Cost?

If you, like me, are a US owner of a Samsung Galaxy S phone, then you’re still asking yourself one major question: Why don’t I have Froyo yet? (Well, okay…HYPOTHETICALLY, if you’re like me, you might already have hypothetically installed a test build of Froyo for your Galaxy S phone.) US Galaxy S owners have been waiting for a while now for an official update to take them to Android 2.2. What’s been the hold-up? Well, a tipster claiming to have some inside knowledge wants us to think that it’s the cost to the carrier for the update that is keeping Froyo from seeing the US shores:

Verizon releases info about an additional 49 markets to get 4G LTE in the first half of 2011

Verizon first announced their 4G LTE service back in December with 38 initial markets, including cities like Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and New York. Now it seems that information has emerged about an additional 49 markets slated for 4G coverage before the first half of 2011.

Verizon made a huge splash at CES this year with the announcement of four LTE ready Android smartphones, and two LTE ready Android tablets. However, one thing we have yet to learn is how much they will charge for 4G mobile data. Big Red currently charges $50 for 5 GB and $80 for 10 GB for their 4G USB modems, but it’s unclear if there will be an unlimited option like there is with the current 3G service.

Continue after the break to see the list of upcoming Verizon 4G LTE markets.

Hands on with the touch-free, Android powered Motorola i886

Motorola is certainly no stranger to making rugged Android phones, such as the Defy. Enter the i886, which was announced on January 10 for Sprint and runs a very stripped down version of Android. The device utilizes a QWERTY keyboard, but has no touch screen functionality. Phone Scoop spent some time with the device, and even with it being so stripped down it is quite obviously being powered by Android.

The i886 uses a J2ME virtual machine to power Java apps, which is pretty important given the fact that this phone does NOT have access to the Android Market or any native Android apps due to the lack of a touch screen. Motorola and Sprint have called the software “proprietary”, although it does have access to a GetJar app database. Continue after the break for a couple more shots and a brief video clip of the Motorola 1886.

Motorola and Verizon Wireless giving away NFL Pro Bowl tickets

Verizon Wireless and Motorola are running a pretty sweet contest from now until midnight January 15th, 2011; win a trip for 2 to the NFL Pro Bowl! That’s right, you can potentially win a trip for you and another to enjoy the best of the best NFL football players in sunny Hawaii.

To enter this contest, click the link in the source and follow the three simple steps given.

If you win, here’s exactly what you’ll get out of the deal:

  • Two tickets to the Pro Bowl in Hawaii on Jan. 30.
  • Two plane tickets.
  • Two-night stay at a hotel for two rooms.
  • The Motorola phone they chose when entering the contest (we would suggest shying away from the Devour)
  • $125 in Verizon gift cards

Remember, this contest ends at midnight tomorrow night so get your submissions in fast!

[via verizoninsider]

Sony Xperia Playstation Phone launching with Orange in UK

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Looks like the rumor mill is flying online again regarding the Sony Playstation Phone. We haven’t really had any information on when or where this device will be launching, price points, or carriers. Mobile Today however speculates that the Sony Ericssopn Xperia PS Phone will be heading to the UK, specifically with Everything Everywhere, which supports Orange and T-Mobile products in the UK.

The Xperia Play has a 1GHz snapdragon processor, 512MB RAM, and Android 2.3. Also, the Sony Xperia Play is said to make its appearance, with possible launch details, at MWC 2011 next month. Hopefully we can get some more information on it that we know is concrete.

[via unwiredview]

XDA Member files class action suit against T-Mobile and Samsung

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XDA Member MicBeast has filed a class action lawsuit against T-Mobile and Samsung regarding the lack of update support going out to the Samsung Vibrant, in that they have kept promising updates to Android 2.2, but still have not delivered. Other carriers however have started to deliver Froyo updates to their Vibrant and Fascinate models.

MicBeast is being told by his lawyer(s) that this is a strong case which violates the Deceptive Trade Practices, code of business ethics essentially, in the US. If you are a T-Mobile user and would like to see some action as well, you should head over to this thread and make your opinion known.

I honestly don’t know how far this will go before the “victim” runs out of cash to support this kind of lawsuit. I mean, I’m sure T-Mobile and Samsung have entire floors of lawyers to battle this type of stuff. But, hey, we hear ya it’s not right regardless.

[via XDA-Developers]

Alltel Wireless and LG introduce the LG Axis

Today, Alltel Wireless and LG just announced a new Android-powered device called the LG Axis. This device looks to be similar to its VZW cousin, the LG Ally, with a slideout keyboard and call and end buttons in addition to the 4 Android keys.

The LG Axis will ship with Android 2.1 and includes all the things you’ve come to love about Android, like Android Market, Google Maps, Gmail, etc. The device also sports a 3.2MP camera and Wi-Fi/Bluetooth connectivity.

To get your hands on your own LG Axis, it will cost you $89.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate and new 2 year contract with Alltel.

In my opinion, this is a perfect device for those unfamiliar with Android and are trying it out for the first time. The specs are just right and the pricing is quite low for a pretty powerful Android device.

Hit the break to read the full presser!

Telenav for Android gets updated to version 6.2, available on AT&T

I’m not going to lie, I think Google Navigation is one of the best apps for Android. Period. However, the great thing about Android is the choice we have in what apps to use, and Telenav is certainly a worthy alternative to Google Navigation. In a press release issued earlier today, Telenav announced that they are updating their Android version of the app to 6.2, bringing a number of improvements including better responsiveness, 22 million new POI’s (points of interest), a new quick search bar, new multiple route suggestions and improved voice recognition.

The multiple route suggestions is probably the coolest new feature, offering up to three possible routes to reach your destination. Telenav 6.2, being dubbed AT&T Navigator 2.2, is available today as an update for the Samsung Captivate, HTC Aria, and the Motorola Backflip. Continue reading after the break for the press release and a video overview.

Bell Will launch Motorola Atrix soon – webpage live

Bell Motorola Atrix

The Motorola Atrix was easily one of the most praised smartphones to be shown at CES 2011. We reported that Bell along with O2 would be getting the Motorola Atrix at some point in the future, although the Press Release by Motorola didn’t specify a date. We can say it’s getting closer as we see above that Bell has made their landing page for the Motorola Atrix live for the public. We can only assume that since we heard AT&T may be launching the Atrix on March 1st, that Bell may be getting it around the same time too after showing us this live webpage.

The Motorola Atrix has the following specs;

  • dual-core 1 GHz processor
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 540 x 960 4-inch display
  • 5 megapixel camera
  • fingerprint scanner
  • HSPA+
  • HDMI-out

Time will tell the tale.

[via Bell]

Android Tops iOS in Mobile Ad Impressions

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For the first time, Android is now the king of mobile Ad Impressions across smartphone use, and dominating the market with 46%, while rivals iOS sit at 32% and RIM at 16% as of the end of December 2010. While this was certainly expected given the huge increase in Android device activations, it’s also noteworthy that this includes tablet devices such as the iPad and iPod Touch, as well as the Samsung Galaxy Tab and others.

Android ad requests grew 141% from Q3 to Q4 in 2010, where they have seen a total of 3130% increase since January 2010! Apple iOS ad requests grew 12% from Q3 to Q4 2010, increasing 14% for the entire 2010 year. RIM requests increased 280% from Q3 to Q4, no doubt from their BlackBerry Torch and Flip campaigns, while having a total growth of 224% for the whole 2010 year.

So what does this all mean? It means that Android is maintaining steady growth, while the competition increases slightly by comparison. In time, with transitions like that in metrics, it’s only a matter of time before Android OS dominates, just as we’re seeing now. Only other question left is how will the release of the Verizon iPhone4 impact these numbers? It won’t really. While they start activating iPhones, They’ll also be activating Android tablets and the next wave of 4G Android smartphones, thus flooding the market again with new devices and even more ad impressions.

We’ll see how this looks at the end of February. What are your thoughts? Will the Verizon iPhone make an impact? Will the Sprint event make a difference?

[via techcrunch]