NVIDIA’s SHIELD handheld gaming console has received a software update to bring a slew of fixes and new features. Behind the scenes, SHIELD has been bumped up to Android 4.3. But first and foremost, the device now has access to support thousands of additional Android games. That was one of the issues plaguing SHIELD –lack of choice. Also, GameStream has left the beta phase. Hit the break for the rundown of the update. Read more
Samsung is hosting their first Developers Conference this week and the theme just might be for developers to build apps that are exclusive to their devices. Samsung already knows the key to success: Build user friendly devices and an ecosystem. In order to build an ecosystem, you need exclusive content and that is exactly what Samsung wants from developers. It won’t be easy because if developers take the time to build an Android app, why make it only available to Samsung? Actually there is simple solution and that’s money. Samsung has lots of cash to throw at developers that want to be part of the program.
Samsung has already shown a little success with achieving this based on the Twitter app. Twitter made a version of their app exclusive to the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition. It’s the only tablet that is works on and the app also takes advantage of the built-in S Pen features. Will more developers be excited this week to do the same? I’m pretty sure if Samsung throws them some money, they will be just giddy.
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.
LG has officially announced the LG G Flex, their version of a smartphone with a curved display. Unlike the Samsung Galaxy Round that bends around the vertical axis of the device, the LG G Flex curves around the horizontal axis. It should be noted that this means the curvature will be similar to an IMAX screen when the device is held in the horizontal orientation when viewing video. LG also announced the back cover of the G Flex will be made of a material that can self-repair hairline scratches “within minutes” to help keep that new device look. Read more
If you own an unlocked Galaxy Note II, you’re in luck. SamMobile has gotten their hands on some pre-release firmware of Android 4.3 for Samsung’s phablet for you to play with. It’s definitely not a daily driver, but hey, at least we know Samsung is going to make good on their promise to update these devices.
The update brings the Note II up to speed with the S 4 and Note 3, especially in the UI department. It has the tabbed settings interface, as well as a few more subtle changes throughout the OS. Samsung Wallet is present, as well as Samsung Knox. There may be more features added before development is halted, but that’s what we’re looking at currently.
If you’re interested, you can download the firmware at the link below. However, if you don’t know what you’re doing or you don’t have the GT-N7100 model of Note II (which means no US carrier variants) leave this one alone for a bit.
Yesterday @evleaks tipped us with a press render of the Nexus 5, and today they have done it again, but this time our favorite new phone is dressed in white. This confirms the leak we saw last week. However, there is one difference, only the back of the phone is in white while the front remains black. Looks pretty cool doesn’t it?
There is also one more juicy bit of information and that is a date of November 1 was revealed. We can only assume this is the date that the Nexus 5 will become available, but it could be just the announcement date. It could also mean the announcement and the launch because Google could make it available in the Play Store immediately after the announcement. As always, stay tuned.
As Android 4.3 updates for HTC One owners have been rolling out around the globe with a variety of carriers this past week, one group has been left out in the cold – Verizon customers. Jason Mackenzie, President of HTC America, indicated in a tweet today that HTC was working on the issue and expected to issue a status update on Monday. Hopefully some good news will be forthcoming from HTC and Verizon on when customers on the carrier can expect to receive the update for their devices.
With Google possibly holding their Kit Kat / Nexus announcement on Monday, leaks are imminent. Less than an hour ago, Twitter leaker @evleaks tweeted out “Nexus 5, by LG, 2013″ with the image above. It lines up perfectly with the leak from last Thursday night. On the back of the device is the usual Nexus logo, now horizontal when in landscape, with LG’s name below. Both the notification bar and navigation menu are transparent. Also, the notification bar has white icons. Folders and the apps button have the low opacity backgrounds. Now if only @evleaks could give us something more on the Nexus 10.
Everything seems to be going great right now for Samsung. Last year’s Galaxy S III bested Apple’s iPhone in a touchscreen accuracy test, and the company has apparently sold more than 40 million Galaxy S 4 handsets. Now, Q3 of 2013’s financial numbers have come in. Samsung recorded a record profit of $7.76 billion. That is a lot of cash. While smartphone margins are plateauing, they have found success in chips due to their margins almost doubling since last year. According to The Wall Street Journal, “the importance of Samsung’s chip unit–comprised of memory and logic chips–is being highlighted as it now accounts for roughly one-fifth of its total operating profit.” That is a very impressive increase in both margins and growth. Samsung may put more of a focus on their chip business if margins continue to grow.
Amongst all of the cash that Samsung is sitting on, no one knows what they will do with it. The easy answer would be to acquire other companies, possibly to assist the launch of their inevitable wearable products.
Source: The Wall Street Journal
While many of us wait for the official release of Android 4.4 KitKat, most are still waiting on their OTA update of Android 4.3 to their devices, namely the Samsung Galaxy S 3, Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 2, and Galaxy S4 Active.
Blind waiting will no longer be necessary, as a document leaked earlier today which listed the update schedule for the aforementioned devices.
- Galaxy Note 2 (Verizon): November 29
- Galaxy Note 2 (AT&T): November 20
- Galaxy S4 (Verizon): October 28
- Galaxy S4 (AT&T): November 13
- Galaxy S3 (Verizon): November 22
- Galaxy S3 (AT&T): November 13
Note 2 owners, Galaxy Active owners, and owners of any of these devices on either Sprint or T-Mobile should check the image above for specific dates. With these 4.3 updates to these Samsung devices, Galaxy Gear support comes as well.
Keep in mind that the document states that these dates are subject to change, so nothing is set in stone.