ZTE And Nuance Enter Into A Multi-Year Agreement To Bring Voice-Enabled Android Devices

 

As the Android platform continues to take a major assault against Apple’s Siri personal assistant, it’s only natural that we have events like CES to see new Android-based alternatives. With that in mind— famed voice to text company Nuance has entered into a multi-year partnership with Chinese manufacturer ZTE to bring voice-activated services for owners of ZTE devices that’s aimed to be used while owners are on the road. ZTE will be introducing its Car Mode feature, which allows for hands-free operation of the device– which shows that ZTE is certainly committed to safe operation for all on the roadways out there. What’s even better is the fact the specialized mode should be available in a multitude of languages— allowing for Nuance’s technology to shine by implementing its voice to text technology which grants access to text messages, calling features and music control— all without the need for needing a cellular data connection, so users can use all the awesome features offline.

ZTE has pledged that the newly announced Car Mode will be available on future ZTE devices released this year, though there’s no indication of when we will see an update for legacy devices.

Be sure to check out our continuing coverage of CES 2013.

 


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Lenovo brings Android applications to Windows 8 computers with Bluestacks

With AMD already being the first major company to team up with Bluestacks in an effort to bring Android applications to the PC, Lenovo has followed suit.  The computer manufacturer has announced a partnership with Bluestacks to bring the Android App Player to all current and future Windows 8 PCs. This means users will have the ability to sync their most-used applications and even swap SMS messages between their computer and smartphone. Unfortunately, there’s no word on when the new software will launch, so it looks like we’ll have to keep our fingers crossed. In the meantime, you can catch the company’s official press release below.

For all of our CES 2013 coverage, head to our CES-2013 hub.
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Pantech Discover coming to AT&T January 11th; 720p and 13MP camera for $50

While Pantech usually makes budget friendly Android devices, the Discover may actually steer away a little bit from that. The Pantech Discover will land on AT&T come January 11th for a low price of $50 on contract. While one may easily assume it’s a low-end device considering the price, the specs are actually quite good for the price:

  • 4.8-inch 720p TFT display
  • 12.6MP rear camera with 1080p video capture, HDR
  • 2MP front-facing camera
  • NFC
  • DLNA
  • Dual 3D surround sound
  • Android 4.0
  • 16GB internal memory
  • MicroSD external memory up to 32GB
  • GSM / EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900; HSPA+ / UMTS 850/1900/2100; LTE 700/850/1900/AWS
  • WiFi a/b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • GPS
  • 2,100mAh
  • 4.76 ounces
  • 134.2 x 68.6 x 9.1mm (5.3 x 2.7 x 0.36 inches)

Aesthetically, it looks great in my opinion. The curvature of the back side of the device looks great and comfortable to hold. If only we knew how much the off-contract price is. If even that is low, then maybe Pantech may really have something here as this device would certainly adhere to the off-contract buyers. Check out the full press release after the break!


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HTC Sales Numbers End 2012 With A 91% Dive

We knew HTC’s sales numbers were down entering the holiday season, and we’re far from what you’d call financial gurus, but the final quarter’s numbers released by the Taiwanese manufacturer are shockingly low. HTC posted net sales of just NT$21 million (New Taiwan Dollar, $34.4 million USD) for the fourth-quarter of 2012. That’s their lowest figure since 2004 and a whopping 91% drop from 2011′s fourth quarter when they posted a net of NT$11.02 billion ($379.5 million USD).

Even the financial pros were surprised by these sales numbers. Bloomberg looked at predictions from 20 financial analysts and came up with an average of NT$1.11 billion in operating income (not net). Their actual fourth quarter income was NT$600 million. Ouch! Given today’s dismal numbers, it’s no surprise the company is refocusing on bringing better products to market.

Source: Bloomberg

Samsung reportedly earns $8.1 billion in Q4 profits

With reports of over 500 handsets sold every minute during Q4 of 2012, Samsung has reportedly earned a whopping $8.1 billion in total profits int hat time period. That number also includes the money they earned from flat screens it makes for other mobile devices such as Apple’s iPhone’s. This comes to no surprise as Samsung’s two top dogs during Q4 was their Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note 2. The Galaxy S III reportedly sold about 15 million units, a slight dip from 18 million the previous quarter but likely due to the fact that their Galaxy Note 2 sold a good 8 million putting the two combined at a whopping 23 million units. Lets also not forget that number doesn’t include Samsung’s other 35 smartphone/tablet variants that flooded the market.

Valued at close to $230 billion, Samsung shows no signs of slowing down as they plan on even having a better 2013. With already successful lines in their Galaxy S series, Note series and Tab series, the successors of each line are already hyped and expected to boast huge sales this coming summer/fall.

With 2012 being a monumental year for Samsung, do you think they’ll surpass expectations this year? With Galaxy S IV already the most anticipated device this year, I wouldn’t be surprised if Samsung tops last year.

source: Reuters

ASUS Introduces Its First Google TV Device: The Qube

 

ASUS has thrown its hat into the Google TV arena by introducing its first G-TV device, aptly named the Qube. The Qube aims to give users a unique TV experience thanks to its Qube interface— which is more or less a 3D UI— and of course, access the Play Store. In addition the Qube will come with some nice little perks as ASUS include access to over 100,000 movies and TV shows through Netflix and Amazon Instant Video, while 50GB of WebStorage cloud space pretty much puts the finishing touches on the cubed package.

Unfortunately, ASUS has not provided any details for when the device will be available nor do we know what the cost will be, but hopefully we will see something sooner than later.

For more CES coverage from Talk Android, click here.


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Samsung Takes Over CES By Installing Permanent TecTile Stations Throughout Caesars Hotel

 

It’s no secret that Samsung’s TecTiles technology is one cool concept, but Samsung is looking to introduce it to the rest of the masses here at CES by announcing to attendees of the event a permanent installation of TecTiles stations throughout Vegas and at all other Caesars Entertainment hotels and casino locaitons worldwide. The TecTiles will allow for everything from checking out information like player guidelines on the casino floor to viewing showtimes or buying tickets for the various entertainment venues to learning all the specifics of a particular shop or attraction guests might be interested in.

Leave it to Samsung to make it easier for us not just at CES 2013, but whenever we visit a Caesars Entertainment hotel and casino during our much-needed vacations… sheesh. Additional details can be found once you hit the break and check out the presser.

For additional CES coverage click here.


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LG Officially Introduces New Line Of Smart Appliances At CES

 

LG has certainly made a name for itself by introducing some awesome smartphones in 2012, but it seems intent on making 2013 the year of the “Smart House” by introducing several new and innovative appliances here at CES. As the Korean manufacturing giant has indicated in a recent tease, LG has introduced new additions to its Smart Appliances line including a washing machine, dryer, a refrigerator, an oven and even a robot vacuum cleaner— all of which are fully controllable using a user’s Android device by scanning an NFC Tag-on symbol found on the appliance.

 

Be sure to check out our continuing coverage of CES 2013.


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Alcatel updating Evo line of tablets

Earlier today we reported on Alcatel’s new products being shown at CES 2013. These included some high end smartphones, some new tablet devices, and some lower end smartphones. New products are not the only thing Alcatel is announcing today. They are also releasing some details about some upgrades to their existing line of Alcatel One Touch Evo tablets. The One Touch Evo 7 HD is very similar to the One Touch Tab 7 HD with both devices sporting 7-inch WXGA 1280 x 800 screens backed by 1GB RAM, a 1.6GHz cpu and running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Even the base price is the same at $179. However, the One Touch Evo 7 HD has the option to add a mobile data module. Two versions are available – 3G for $249 and 4G for $349.

Moving down a bit, mirroring the One Touch Tab 7 is the One Touch Evo 7. This 7-inch 1024 x 600 screen device carries 1GB of RAM, a single-core 1GHz cpu and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The mobile data option is not as impressive either with only an HSPA+21 module and Bluetooth 2.1. Pricing has not been announced for this model.

Be sure to check back throughout the day here at TalkAndroid for more CES 2013 coverage.

source: Engadget