Acer planning to jump on wearable tech bandwagon, adding 4G capability to portfolio

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In a new interview Acer’s vice president for the corporate business division, Peter Shieh, has revealed Acer is planning to get into the wearable tech market during 2014. According to Shieh, Acer “actually demonstrated our products to some of the company’s clients at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month. The company is still developing certain types of wearable devices. We certainly aim to play a role in the new market.” Shieh did not specify what form the new devices may take. For now, it seems most companies are pushing to get smartwatch type devices onto retail shelves, although a variety of smartglasses are also in development.

Press images of the Galaxy Note 3 Neo leak, unfortunately it won’t be coming to the U.S. or UK

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The Galaxy Note 3 Neo is already available for pre-order in Belgium, but it hasn’t even been officially announced yet. It obviously has to be close because the press images are already available. The latest rumor is that it will be on January 27, but there is a little bad news for those of you in the U.S. and the UK. Samsung has already confirmed that there are no plans to bring the device to either country. We are not sure what the reason is. Maybe for once, Samsung has decided not to confuse consumers with yet another variant?

Hit the break for more images.

Huawei settles with Rockstar Consortium, pays to avoid any legal battle

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Back in October, Rockstar Consortium launched a fierce patent lawsuit against Google and Android. Then in December, Google decided to fight back and stated Rockstar’s own CEO said that every tech company is infringing on their patents. Google, rightfully so, was sticking up for their Android OEMs. But now Rockstar has made one of them give in. Rather than going through a legal battle with a group that has much more power, Huawei has decided to pay off Rockstar.

Had Huawei stood up to Rockstar, they would have faced a group led by Apple, Microsoft, BlackBerry, Sony, and Ericsson. Since Huawei filed a joint motion with Rockstar, the group will now likely push harder against the remaining OEMs they previously sued — Samsung, LG, HTC, ASUS, Pantech, and ZTE. If history means anything, we know one of them will put up a good fight.

Source: FOSS Patents

Samsung issues statement regarding incompatibility with third-party accessories

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Yesterday, it was brought to our attention that the Android 4.4 KitKat update for the Galaxy Note 3 broke compatibility with a few third-party accessories. If you find yourself with an accessory that doesn’t work anymore, the only way to get it working again would be to root, but how many people are willing to do that? Samsung did make a statement regarding this issue, but I am not sure anyone is going to feel better about the situation…..

LG G Pro 2 (or G2 Pro) could be unveiled at MWC with a 6-inch display

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Last year, LG announced the Optimus G Pro in February, so it’s no surprise that ETNews is reporting that the LG G Pro 2 (or G2 Pro) will be announced next month. It very well could be announced at MWC, but last year’s announcement was about a week before the big event.

As to the specs, it’s now expected that this beast will feature a 6-inch 1080p display, a Snapdragon 800, 3GB of RAM, and Android 4.4. I know some people might be disappointed that the display doesn’t support QHD (2560 x 1440), but with the display being that large, it’s certainly not surprising.

OnePlus One 2014 phone to feature flagship specs and design, plus CyanogenMod

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OnePlus, the Chinese company from Oppo executives, has recently announced they’ll be releasing their first phone in 2014 with CyanogenMod pre-installed. Fortunately, it still looks like mid-2014 is going to be the release date, and CM will still be the default OS. On their Facebook page today, they’ve clarified that the device is also going to launch with the top specs and design for a 2014 flagship device, which likely means at least a 1080p or 2k screen and a processor with more cores than you can shake a stick at. I’m not sure exactly what they’re planning on doing in the design department, but they’re aiming big, and that’s always a good thing.

Hopefully we’ll hear more about this device in the near future, including when we can expect to see it hit shelves (and if it will be released outside of China at all) and what’s going to be included under the hood.

source: Facebook

via: Phone Arena

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 with KitKat not working with third-party accessories, root fix now available

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Over on XDA, there are people reporting that their Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is not working with third-party accessories. Back in October, we heard that Samsung may be implementing a system to block third-party accessories without their certification. The reports are coming from devices running Android 4.4 KitKat, meaning that Samsung may have activated the system with the update.

The first accessory that falls victim to this seems to be Spigen’s S-View Flip Cover. This leaves owners of the accessory without a way to use it properly and thus making them feel their money has been wasted. Spigen is currently working on a Slim Armor View case; however, its production may be halted until they sort things out with Samsung. So for the moment, avoid buying third-party accessories for Samsung devices.

Japanese carrier KDDI adds a slew of Android devices to its lineup

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Along with the WiFi-only Sony Xperia Z Ultra and LG G Flex, Japanese carrier KDDI is adding a few more devices to its lineup today. These devices, however, will likely never leave Asian markets. First up is the Sharp Aquos Phone Series Mini smartphone. Pictured above, Sharp is offering the device in a few different colors. Inside is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 processor with 2GB of RAM. A 13MP sits on the back and the Phone Series Mini runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean out of the box. Incredibly, this 4.5-inch smartphone has a 1080p display that allows for 487ppi.

The other device, also from Sharp, is the Aquos Pad. This 7-inch tablet also has Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. Like the Nexus 7, it has 1920×1200 display which is great for a 7-inch tablet. Like the aforementioned smartphone, it has a 13MP camera. Hit the break to see the Aquos Pad.

New ruling says Samsung infringed on Apple autocomplete patent

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With a new patent trial scheduled to start on March 31, 2014 between Apple and Samsung, Judge Lucy Koh has entered a summary judgment order on some motions from the two parties. Judge Koh denied some requests from Apple, but did rule that Samsung infringed an Apple patent on “word recommendations” aka autocomplete. At this point, Samsung will now have to argue at trial that the patent itself should be ruled invalid. Considering the ubiquity of autocomplete on any smartphone, this ruling could be a problem for manufacturers of other Android devices. Reportedly, Google is involved with an anonymous reexamination request of the patent. As the parties prepare for trial, Apple still has five patents at issue with one of them ruled as being infringed upon by Samsung even before the jury starts to hear the case.

Samsung SM-S780L appears ready for launch

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Samsung has a new device, model number SM-S780L, that appears to be very close to the end of the development and certification pipeline and is thus ready for an official launch. At this time though, we still don’t have much information about the device’s specifications or what name the device will be marketed under. According to a User Agent profile located on the Samsung web site, the SM-S780L is running a screen with 1280×720 resolution, although we do not know what size the screen is. The device also received Wi-Fi certification and appears to support both W-CDMA and GSM wireless connections. Thus far specifics like processor, memory, storage, and camera information remain a mystery.

Given the lack of support for full 1080 HD resolution, the device will likely be targeted at the mid-tier smartphone buyer. Perhaps we will see the SM-S780L make an appearance at MWC 2014 next month along with other new Samsung devices like the Galaxy S5.

source: phoneArena

The Galaxy S 5 probably won’t sport magnetic resonance wireless charging

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Back in October, there was a rumor that Samsung would offer magnetic resonance wireless charging by mid-2014, and many were hoping it meant the Galaxy S 5 would be the first device.

What exactly is this type of wireless charging? It essentially allows the phone to be charged without actually touching the charging pad. Multiple devices can be charged at the same time as long as they are 3cm from the charging pad or station. Unfortunately 3cm isn’t all that far, and Samsung seems to agree.

Wi-Fi-only Sony Xperia Z Ultra tablet officially announced for Japan

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We have seen a number of leaks regarding a Wi-Fi-only version of the Xperia Z Ultra, and Sony finally made it official. It’s essentially an Xperia Z Ultra smartphone without the cellular radios. They are marketing it as a tablet, and it just might be the smallest tablet yet with its 6.4-inch (1080p) display.

The rest of the specs include a 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, microSD for expanded storage, 8MP rear camera, 2.2MP front-facing camera, and Android 4.3. Also, of course, just like the smartphone version, it’s dust and water resistant and is only 6.5mm thick.

For now, it will only be available in Japan for a price of  ¥51,800 ($495). If you’re in Japan, look for it on January 24th in either black, white, or purple.

source: Sony Japan

New Moto X wood finishes now available on Moto Maker

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It may have taken a little longer for Motorola to deliver on the wood grain finishes for the Moto X than what they had originally planned, but their estimates regarding availability are improving. Last week when the price for the bamboo finish was cut to $25, Motorola indicated they planned to make ebony, teak and walnut finishes available starting on January 21st. Today is that day and Motorola has delivered as the additional finishes are now available in Moto Maker. Only the back plate can be produced with a wood grain finish.

Hit the source link if you are ready to customize and order a Moto X with a wood finish.

source: Motorola

New HTC “M8x” name surfaces in government database

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We have been slowly gathering information about the successor to the HTC One. While we have been seeing it referred to as its codename, M8, another HTC device with a similar codename has surfaced. Indonesian site Postel publishes device certification info, similar to the FCC, and notes that the HTC “M8x” has gone through their system. What this device entails, no one knows. In all likelihood, it is probably the same handset as the HTC M8 with support for different bands. Expect the device to be released in March.

Source: Postel
Via: Pocketnow

Unofficial method to connect Galaxy Gear to Nexus 5 worked out

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Over on the XDA Developers site, forum member pcelli figured out how to get a Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch working with his Nexus 5 smartphone. This had to be done on an unofficial basis as up to now Samsung has only enabled support for the Galaxy Gear with other Samsung devices. Although there have been some hints indicating Samsung may eventually break down the wall around that particular garden, getting a Galaxy Gear to work with a non-Samsung device may never be officially supported.