Google has been granted a patent for multiple flashes on a mobile device. A series of LED flashes is bound to be more powerful than the single LED most smartphones have these days and it opens a host of photographic possibilities. For small or close-up photography a ring flash will go a long way toward smooth, consistent and shadow free lighting. A multiple flash layout also opens the door for second curtain or slow sync flash, which allows for much better nighttime shots.
The patent also addresses different positions and configurations for the flash units. One such configuration would make it more like a pop-up flash as seen on many point and shoot cameras. Moving the flash farther from the lens would also have the added benefit of reducing the number of red-eye shots. This new patent creates a lot of possibilities, including the end of mediocrity when it comes to cameras on Google’s Nexus handsets. This could, of course, find its way to Motorola. Anyone count the flashes on that mythical X Phone yet?
Via: Unwired View
One of the benefits of the Android ecosystem is that it invites hardware manufacturers to produce devices at a variety of price points, an invitation not loss on Acer. While many people focus on the high end, top-tier devices, eventually that cutting-edge technology trickles down to eventually become part of the budget tier of devices as we are seeing with some Acer hardware. According to reports, Acer is working on plans to produce 8- and 10-inch tablets running on quad-core MediaTek processors with “aggressive” price points. Readers may recall Acer showing off the Acer Iconia B1-A71 tablet at CES with a planned retail price less than $150 dollars. These new quad-core tablets from Acer will join that device for buyers on a budget. Linxian Lang, president of Acer’s Greater China unit, thinks the strategy of producing tablets across a wide spectrum of price points, including the low-end, will help Acer regain momentum in the tablet market.
ZTE is continuing its massive 2013 assault by introducing yet another intriguing new device called the the Blade C smartphone. According to the Bluetooth SIG, the Blade C smartphone will also be known as the V807, V889S, and T807 models and will be featured in Chinese and European markets. The Blade C is expected to be targeted at consumers looking for Jelly Bean-powered budget devices as each will not only feature a fairly low pricing point, but the V807 model will have a 4-inch WVGA display, 3MP rear camera, Bluetooth 4.0, a decent dual-core 1 GHz MediaTek MTK 6577 processor, 512MB of RAM and a 1,600 mAh battery— which should more than suffice for those looking to get the most out of a little.
The smartphone is available in China at this time and is on the way to European markets— so the Blade C should be in stores sooner than later. Oh and in case you’re wondering— there’s no word on whether or not we will see the smartphone on American shores, but it’s probably wise not to hold your breath for this puppy.
You’ve seen some pictures, and more pictures, and read the leaked information about the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0, Samsung’s latest version of a device utilizing their S Pen. All indications up to now were that the device would be officially unveiled at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. However, European site Mobile Geeks has discovered several online retailers listing the Galaxy Note 8.0 as being available starting on February 19, 2013, about a week prior to MWC. It appears two versions of the GT-N5100, the 3G capable model, will be available with either 16GB of 32GB of memory. There is no information available regarding the GT-N5110 wi-fi only model, but we would expect it to be available at the same time if the dates are accurate.
The question now is whether these sites listing the Galaxy Note 8.0 have revealed actual availability information or whether they are just creating placeholder pages in anticipation of the device being available later in February after MWC.
source: Mobile Geeks
Despite problems with order fulfillment from the Google Play store and gaining a reputation akin to a clear shot of a Bigfoot, there are still a lot of people that want to get in on the LG Nexus 4 bandwagon. The desire for the device comes not just from consumers, but from retailers and carriers as well who want to be able to offer it to their customers. The latest example of this is Best Buy, which now lists the LG Nexus 4 with T-Mobile service on their web site. You might be tempted by that language on the site that reads, “Usually ships in 3-5 business days.” However, using the Estimate Arrival Time link I got dates between February 6th and February 11th. Even that may still be quicker than waiting for your opportunity to place an order through the Play Store.
source: Best Buy
We heard rumors that HTC will unveil the M7 before Mobile World Congress and it looks that will come true. An invite just hit our inbox for an event scheduled for February 19 in New York City. I think it’s safe to say it will be the M7, and we are also hearing that there will be an event in London as well. We will be in NYC to get all the juicy details so stay tuned to TalkAndroid.
Pantech officially unveiled the VEGA No. 6, which sports a 5.9-inch 1080p (1920 x 1080) display. With the recent announcement of the Huawei Ascend Mate and this offering, all of a sudden the Galaxy Note is looking tiny. The VEGA No. 6 will also sport a 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal memory, microSD, a 13MP rear camera, a 2MP front camera, and a 3,140mAh battery. It will come in at 9.9mm thick and feature Pantech’s Flux UX on top of Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean.
It will also sport a rear touchpad called the V touch that will allow users to control things from the back of the phone to make one handed operation easier. Pantech is also promising the 13MP shooter will be DSLR quality. It will be available in South Korea in February for 849,000 KRW ($778). No word on if this bad boy will hit other parts of the world, but we will let you know as soon as we hear more.
Hot off the heels of AT&T’s successful launch back in November, Samsung has launched its Galaxy Express smartphone for additional markets worldwide. In case you’ve forgotten, this attractive mid-range device features a 4.5-inch screen with a SuperAMOLED Plus display, 1.2GHz dual-core chip, a gig of RAM, a hefty 2,000mAh battery inside, Jelly Bean and for all the markets out there that support 4G LTE— there’s a built-in 4G LTE chip inside as well. All-in-all, the Galaxy Express appears to be a solid value-driven smartphone for those who aren’t looking to break the bank too much.
While the device has formally been announced, Samsung is staying mum on how much the device will cost and which international markets will see the device first— but we’re hoping to have an answer for both questions sooner than later.
It’s funny, just yesterday I was wondering what Google will do with the Nexus 7 at Google I/O. I automatically thought they would probably step up to a full 1080p HD display, but wasn’t sure about the rest. Well word is they will definitely add a 1080p display to the second generation 7-incher. The other rumor is that it will probably be thinner with a more industrial design. No word on the internals, but since ASUS will be doing this year’s Nexus 7 again, I am thinking we might see the Tegra 4. My other prediction is that we will see last year’s version get a price drop to $149 for 16GB and $199 for 32GB. It’s still a very formidable tablet for most people.
As to the version of Android, the sources tell us it will still be Jelly Bean. I am certainly expecting a bigger software bump to Key Lime Pie, but then again, Google could wait until the fall to launch the next big version. That would certainly be a disappointment, but I guess we will just have to wait and see.
After Samsung acquired mSpot in 2012, they revamped the music locker service and released it as Music Hub on the Galaxy S III. Up to this point, Music Hub has been exclusive to the Galaxy S III and the Galaxy Note II, but Samsung is reportedly planning to release the application to more devices, as well as to devices outside of the US. Older Samsung devices will get the honors of being first in line, and other non-Samsung devices will receive it afterwards. No word on exactly when this is happening, but with the success Samsung is having, I can’t imagine it’s going to take too much longer.
source: Sammy Hub