Verizon to launch WiFi calling in 2015

Verizon_glass-A few carriers have announced plans for WiFi calling on their devices, and it looks like Verizon will follow suit. Unfortunately, the feature won’t be coming to the carrier anytime soon. Verizon’s Fran Shammo claims that Verizon still needs to do some of the technological legwork to make sure that WiFi calling is an acceptable experience, and since Verizon’s 3G coverage is one of the best around, they haven’t felt the need to urgently push WiFi calling. Still, they plan on deploying the feature at some point in the middle of 2015, which is almost a full year away.

In place of WiFi calling, Verizon has been hard at work rolling out VoLTE which offers a comparable experience to traditional 3G calling. There still aren’t many phones on Verizon’s network that support VoLTE or WiFi calling, so don’t expect a massive change overnight, even after Verizon allows WiFi calling next year.

source: Fierce Wireless

MediaTek opens up kernel source for first batch of Android One devices

android_one_devicesWith the first batch of Android One devices on the way, MediaTek has released the kernel source code for the devices for developers to take advantage of. The source is available on Google’s Android repository.

Other OEMs that use MediaTek processors typically aren’t compliant with releasing source code for their hardware, so it’s nice to see the company bypassing the company and releasing this on their own. Hopefully we’ll see other companies follow suit.

source: Google Source

Sony losses expected to be around $1.7 billion thanks to their mobile division

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Most people have at least one Sony-branded item in their homes as they have been one of the biggest electronics companies in the world for quite some time now. So, it may come as a surprise that after an internal review, Sony is expecting losses in the ballpark of $1.7 billion dollars. The Japanese tech giant attributes these losses to their mobile division and will be forced to restructure their strategy to reduce risk and volatility and to guarantee “more stable profits”. According to their report, this will be achieved by releasing less mid-range devices and focusing on premium, top-tier handsets. It should be interesting to see what the future holds for Sony’s mobile division.

Source: Sony

Vector Unit revs up Beach Buggy Racing in the Play Store

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Following a good amount of success with Beach Buggy Blitz, Vector Unit has released a sequel called Beach Buggy Racing. The off-road kart racing game takes players for a wild ride with plenty of tracks, explosions, and powerups to keep things interesting. It is a 3D game and the physics give an accurate feel when interacting with other objects.

Like its predeccessor, Beach Buggy Racing is free-to-play. When Android TV launches, Vector Unit says the game will be fully supported for big screens. For now, a phone or tablet connected to a television will do just fine. Beach Buggy Racing can split a television into four sections for multiplayer.

Hit the break for the video, gallery, and download links.


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Microsoft’s new Universal Mobile Keyboard works with both Android and iOS

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Looking for a new Bluetooth keyboard for your Android tablet? You might want to consider the Universal Mobile Keyboard from Microsoft. That’s right you read that right….Microsoft. This one not only works with Windows, but it also works with Android and iOS too.

It might seem weird that Microsoft would offer a keyboard that works with Android, but if you think about the fact that they are pushing Office 365, it isn’t all that surprising. If you plan on using Office 365, you will need a keyboard if you want to be productive, and Microsoft figured they might as well join the party.


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Google’s Material Design takes home the Gold Prize at the User Experience Awards 2014

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Material Design was introduced at Google I/O, and we all  fell in love with it instantly. It’s by far the biggest visual change for Android since Ice Cream Sandwich.

The User Experience Awards 2014 took place last week and Google received the Gold Prize for the “Best Contribution to UX” category. Other Gold Prize winners included Volkswagen for Best Brand Experience and SAP Consumer Insight 365 for Best Enterprise Experience. The Grand Prize went to Virgin America for Most Significant Industry Evolution.

Congratulations Google!! Just in case you aren’t familiar with Material Design, we have a short video after the break.


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Facebook could make private sharing easier with ‘Moments’

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Facebook knows it’s hard to share things with only a few select people, at least on their network. But they might have the answer with a product codenamed, “Moments.”

Moments is being tested right now with employees so it could be released soon. As it stands right now, the design is a grid with tiles representing close friends and/or family. All the user has to do is tap on a contact tile to quickly share something with just them. According to TechCrunch, the app looks a lot like the Cluster app.


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Motorola drops four new apps on the Play Store for 2014 Moto X

Moto_X_2014_Moto_Display_TAMotorola has released four new applications onto the Play Store for the release of the 2014 Moto X. Last year, Motorola separated several of their apps from the core software of the Moto X and uploaded them to the Play Store to allow quick updates without a complete OTA rollout. It was a successful strategy and we’ve seen other manufacturers do the same things with their newer devices.

These four new apps are Moto Actions, Moto Display, Motorola Sensor Services, and an app just called Moto. The Moto Actions app handles the gestures that Motorola has been showing off with their new device. It looks like it’ll give you an explanation of each gesture and let you toggle specific gestures on and off. The Moto Display app is the advanced version of Active Display from last year’s Moto X, and it is indeed separate from the Play Store listing for Active Display.
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HTC and Sprint announce the mid-range Desire 510

htc_desire_510_whiteHTC and Sprint have announced availability for the Desire 510 on the carrier’s network, and if you’re on any of Sprint’s prepaid or postpaid networks, it’s looking like you’ll be able to get your hands on the device. For Sprint Easy Pay customers, you can own the device for just $9 per month for two years, and Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile will carry it with a $99 price tag.

Sprint hasn’t changed the specs of the device at all, so you’ll get Qualcomm’s zippy Snapdragon 400 64-bit CPU, 1 GB of RAM, a 5 megapixel rear camera and a 4.7-inch display. At the price point that the 510 is being offered, it’s a hard phone to beat.
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