Totally Cool: Samsung’s Smart Device-Skin patent brings skinning to a whole new level

Most of the time the subject of patents can be dreadfully boring, but when looking at recent patent filings, it can give you a glimpse of what the future holds. We’ve already seen things like flexible displays, which could come to market by this time next year.

Another very interesting patent from Samsung is an invention that allows users to completely customize their smartphone (or other device) skin. Users will be able to take a digital photo or other graphic and electronically wrap it around their device’s skin or film layer that’s associated within the device’s display unit.

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Google Nexus tablet could arrive in May priced between $199 and $249

We reported earlier this week that ASUS was selected to manufacture the first Google Nexus tablet. Now Digitimes posted news confirming this and adding that HTC and Acer were in the mix. The difference in their report versus what we posted earlier in the week is that a release could happen in May and they gave a price range of $199 to $249, whereas we heard June for the release and a firm price of $199. We did hear that production would start in April and Digitimes confirms that.

Unfortunately Digitimes is never the best source to get information, so thankfully there’s another source confirming some of these details. When Digitimes makes statements like, “The co-branded tablet PC is expected to be the first using Google Play Store, the sources noted,” you really have to question their validity. Of course, a broken clock is right twice a day right?

I do feel confident that ASUS is indeed the manufacturer due to the fact that they already have the MeMo 370T (pictured above) coming soon with a Tegra 3 priced similarly, but I’m still banking on June with a Google I/O announcement.

source: digitimes

ARCHOS G9 Series Tablets Get Official Ice Cream Sandwich Update

Today is a joyous day if you’re an ARCHOS G9 series tablet owner. We knew it was only a matter of time before a major update arrived for the tablet, but unfortunately encountered some minor delays which raised some doubt. The brand has officially pushed out the coveted Ice Cream Sandwich update to the 80 G9 and 101 G9 tablet devices. The new update will now bring the software build of those tablets to Android 4.0.3. In addition to ICS, you’ll find some MediaCenter and FileManager upgrades and ohhhh– Xbox gamepad support if that strikes your fancy. If you’re an owner of either tablet, go out and grab the update today by hitting up the Support link below. And please– be sure to let us know how that delectable ICS goodness tastes.

 source: ARCHOS Support
via: Phandroid

 

Motorola Now Selling Water Repellent Wi-Fi Only Xyboard Tablets (Update: they were splash proof all along)

Interesting news coming from the Motorola camp as they are now offering their Xyboard tablets with nano-coating technology. The good news is that is means the Wi-Fi only tablets are now water-resistant, allowing users to simply wipe off spills in case of an accident. The bad news is that this doesn’t apply to the 4G laden Verizon models, and no, Moto isn’t going to upgrade them either. So if you already bought a Xyboard from Verizon, you are just going to need to remain being careful with your device around liquids. Kind of a lame move on Motorola’s part, it would’ve been nice to see an upgrade option even if was for a nominal fee. No word on whether Motorola teamed up with Liquipel or HzO, or just created their own coating.

In case you were wondering, the prices remain the same as before. $399 for the 8.2-inch and $499 for the 10.1-inch, but this time around Moto is throwing in a free $90 portfolio case with purchase. If you have been looking to get a new Xyboard but have been holding out, now would be the time to get one. Hit one of the source links below to make a purchase.

Update: Looks like they were always splash proof. In fact this is from the original presser about the DROID XYBOARD 8.2 and 10.1:

Both are equipped with scratch-resistant displays that use Corning® Gorilla® Glass to stay brilliant and a coating of water-repellent nanoparticles makes them resistant to accidental spills and splashes.

Even Rob missed this in his review. With so many devices and so many specs, sometimes things fall through the cracks. We’re sorry about the confusion.

source: Xyboard 8.2 / Xyboard 10.1
via: Unwired View

Nvidia’s Tegra 3 Reminds Apple’s New iPad Just What It’s Capable Of (Video)

Nvidia just wants to send out a reminder, with all the hype about Apple’s new iPad and all, just who rules when it comes to the mobile core space.  The company touts their latest product, the Tegra 3 chipset and claims that the iPad’s CPU is no challenge.  And as proof, they’re pointing towards their Nvidia powered gaming options.  Using their site, the chip manufacturer shows off just how good the 4-Plus-1 CPU can be.  Check out the list of impressive games that have been released to compliment the powerful CPU.

Mobile app developers are beginning to realize just how far they can take mobile applications when utilizing NVIDIA Tegra 3 – the world’s only 4-PLUS-1 quad-core mobile processor with the extra battery saver core that allows it to use less power than dual-core processors.

Here’s a quick look at just a few of the top Tegra 3 apps:

  • Splashtop THD from Splashtop Inc. – allows you to seamlessly stream content from your desktop onto your Tegra 3 tablet.
  • Photaf THD Panorama Pro from Oren Bengigi – a new photo-stitching app that allows you to combine a sequence of photos to create a panoramic view of any scenery. This app accelerates image stitching time by using all four Tegra 3 processing cores.
  • Snapseed from Nik Software – one of the easiest, most intuitive photo editors available for your Tegra 3 device. Take a picture, customize it to your liking and immediately send to friends and family. Coming to Google Play this summer.
  • PowerDirector Mobile from CyberLink– this app was once a powerful desktop-based video editing tool. Thanks to the Tegra 3’s high-performance and battery-friendly 4-PLUS-1 architecture, PowerDirector Mobile will give you the power to manipulate and edit videos on your mobile device. Coming to Google Play this fall.

source: Nvidia

Mobile Industry Already Looking to the Idea of “5G”

Just when we were getting used to the idea of having 4G LTE as commonplace in our daily lives the mobile industry of today is looking at the future networks of tomorrow. Even though 4G is just being pushed out, Verizon in the lead with its near 200 networks in the U.S., talks of 5G networks are now circulating. 5G wouldn’t be all about another big speed increase but rather a push for a more reliable network. As Tod Sizer, head of wireless research at Alcatel-Lucent’s Bell Labs puts it:

“5G won’t be about more speed, necessarily. It may be faster, but it will be more about meeting the expectation of service quality.”

Given that industry analysts believe that the amount of data traffic created by smartphones and tablets will be dwarfed by data generated from connected “things” like shoes, watches, appliances, thermostats, etc, by 2020, reliability is important. Heck, we’ve seen how frustrating it is when networks go down for just a few hours. But as carriers are brushing up against the limits of physics as they try to add network capacity a need to meet the growing data demands becomes that much more important.  Read more

Samsung Is Not Unveiling the Rumored 11.6-inch Tablet Tomorrow, But Instead Opting For Angry Birds Space

We already know that Samsung has plans to make an announcement tomorrow at SXSW and there is a rumor going around about a 11.6-inch tablet that unfortunately is not true. According to a press release we recently received, tomorrow’s announcement is much less exciting than a new HD tablet from Samsung. Samsung is teaming up with Rovio for the (2nd) official unveiling of Angry Birds Space, and the two are also going to provide exclusive content for the Galaxy Note once the game is released on March 22nd. There will also be Galaxy Note’s on demo at the SXSW Samsung booth for attendees to get an early hands-on with the game and a chance to win prizes.

This is a far cry from the unveiling of an 11.6-inch tablet, but just for the heck of it why don’t I tell you about this rumored tablet anyway. Apparently Samsung has a new tablet they have been hiding up their sleeve and the rumored specs are nothing to scoff at. Given that the new iPad was just announced yesterday, this would have made for perfect timing as this new Sammy tablet would put the new iPad to shame. Now before you go saying 11.6-inches is too big, get a load of this. The 11.6-inch tablet is said to have a whopping 2560 x 1600 screen resolution, higher than the new iPad, and a density close to 260ppi. And because the bezel surrounding the screen is so slim, it’s said that the tablet’s dimensions aren’t much larger than the Galaxy Tab 10.1. Other believed specs include a 2GHz dual-core Exynos 5250 processor and will run Android 4.0. This isn’t a long shot for Samsung as they already have a 11.6-inch windows tablet, the Series 7 Slate. Now the question is when will we get to see this thing if not tomorrow?

What do you guys think, could you dig a tablet like this? Jump past the break to see the underwhelming press release.

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Amazon To Introduce Two Versions Of Upcoming Tablet For 2012

In case you weren’t interested in the upcoming follow-up to the Amazon Kindle Fire before, this will certainly catch your attention. Hot off the success of the original Kindle Fire tablet, Amazon is planning on making a bigger splash by also introducing a bigger version of the tablet. Amazon is reportedly eyeing a move from e-readers to tablet PCs due to the strong sales of the original Kindle Fire, so it will introduce a 7-inch version for the first half of the year followed by a 10-inch version for the second half of the year. Moreover, as previously highlighted by us— Amazon will outsource production of the 10-inch model to Quanta Computer and Foxconn Electronics. We just keep seeing more and more indications for the follow-up of the Kindle Fire to be unveiled within the next few months, so make sure you stay tuned with us for any further developments or news.

source: DigiTimes

CM9 Alpha Officially Available For The Nook Tablet

 

Another obstacle has been overcome— this time the Nook Tablet is CM9’s latest victim. In what can be described as nothing short of remarkable, CM9 Alpha has been ported to the device and while a few features are currently non-functional, the ICS-powered tablet is otherwise running smooth like butter. Here’s a quick rundown of what is non-functional at this time:

  • microphone
  • hw composition
  • hw video decoding
  • Bluetooth
  • FM radio

The ROM is again in alpha status, so it’s expected that some items wouldn’t be working. Moreover, the developers won’t be providing any type of support for those who are brave enough to try it out. This means you’ll have to use the forums as your resource and try to develop solutions with other amateur developers and forum members. You’ve read enough about this, so why don’t you check out CM9 Alpha 0 on the Nook Tablet in action before slapping it onto your own Nook Tablet? You’re going to be mighty impressed.

 

 

 

source: XDA Forums
via: Phandroid

 

 

 

Google Applies For “snap a landmark, find your location” Patent

Google is adding yet again another possible patent for its up and coming patent portfolio. The “snap a landmark, find your location” application could possibly join other crazy patents like voice actions for your Google TV.  And while it’s possible we could never even see this technology hit devices, it’s still pretty cool to see what Google is trying to do here.  Innovation is the name of the game and there’s no better innovator than the search giant themselves.

Imagine, for some unknown reason you’re unable to use your GPS while traveling. Well, in this instance, all one would have to do is take a snap shot of the nearest landmark around and upload it to Google’s servers for analyses. The o’l Goog would search its millions of images from their geographical database returning your location coordinates and other pertinent information.  This could certainly prove to be an adequate tool for travelers alike.  However, I can’t help but wonder why one’s GPS wouldn’t be working for other than the fact you have no data connection where you’re at.  In that case, if you have no data connection you won’t be able to upload that pic to Google’s servers either, but I digress :)

source: Engadget