Best Buy offers $50 gift-card incentive for new customers

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Are you in the market for a new smartphone? If so, you’re in luck with a killer upgrade deal from Best Buy Mobile. Best Buy is offering a $50 gift card incentive to those looking to upgrade their smartphones anytime between now and December 31st, 2013. That’s right, you have the entire year to upgrade your smartphone and still cash in on this deal.  With all of the options available like the HTC DROID DNA, the Samsung Galaxy Note II and the ever-popular Samsung Galaxy S III currently available on the market, upgrading is an easy decision to make.

According to Best Buy all that is required is a name, email address and phone number to qualify for the incentive. Hurry though as this deal is only open and available through February 9th, 2013. If you plan on upgrading your phone anytime during 2013, now would be the time to grab this deal.

Source: Best Buy Mobile

Wireless carriers called on lack of security updates for Android devices

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Mobile security is a big deal on Android devices. While it’s debatable if malware is as big of a problem on Android as security analysts say it is, it’s still very important to keep your devices protected, just in case. Usually, Google does an excellent job of patching most vulnerabilities in their software, the problem is that carriers take way, way too long to get those security patches onto consumer handsets. Activist Chris Soghoian, known for his work with consumer security and privacy, has recently called out wireless carriers on their poor practices with updating these devices.

He’s saying what we’ve all been thinking, but he definitely brings to light some of the less thought about problems of slow updates. Most people complain about being stuck on old software because it’s slower or lacks cooler features, but that outdated software also lacks the updated protection that current software would provide. The antivirus on your computer wouldn’t do much good if it was looking for malware from 2010, would it? He also talks about the stock Android browser, which is one of the more popular browsers simply because it’s preloaded on the device. Unlike Firefox, Chrome, or any other browser you can download from the Play Store, the stock browser lacks constant updates and new malware protection like updateable apps have.

It’s definitely a good read, and definitely a situation that needs to change. Read on past the source to see what Soghoian has to say.

source: Threat Post

Unconvincing Galaxy S IV render pops up on Twitter

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This newest Galaxy S IV leak is both awesome and incredibly disappointing. It’s an extremely attractive design with absolute top-of-the-line specs for a smartphone, and it’s also extremely fake. While the bottom stereo speakers on the metal frame would be a fantastic addition to Samsung’s newest flagship, it’s extremely unconventional and very unlike Samsung’s traditional plastic designs. The angles on those speakers and the bottom USB port are weird, to say the least, especially since they’re viewable from the front and the very bottom, and the lighting and shadows are completely impossible. But who knows, maybe Samsung’s figured out how to defy physics with their S IV? We can hope, right?

It’s also worth noting that the Samsung logo uses a weird, non-Samsung font, and Bluetooth 5.0 isn’t a thing. It is possible that this was just an early mock-up at the beginning of the design phase for the phone, and if that’s the case, I hope metal frame, dedicated camera button, and ridiculous specs managed to make it to the end product. We’ll just have to wait a little longer to find out.

source: Twitter

Ice Cream Sandwich finally finds its way to HTC’s Thunderbolt

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Yes folks, this post isn’t a flashback to a year ago. The HTC Thunderbolt is actually receiving the much elusive ICS update for the device. This update upgrades the Thunderbolt to Android 4.0.4 with Sense 3.6. Head to Settings > About phone > Software update to see if your update is ready.

Considering ICS came out almost a year and a half ago, I’d like to say it’s better late than never… But this is as late as you can get. Anyone still using this as their primary device?

Thanks, Josh! 

BlackBerry 10 Android Runtime Layer planned for Jelly Bean update

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It has been confirmed that BlackBerry 10′s Android Runtime Layer will be updated into Jelly Bean with it currently on Gingerbread. If you’re not familiar with this, BlackBerry Z10 owners are currently able to side-load Gingerbrea-based Android applications onto their device. This is certainly a huge thing for the platform as it’s able to take advantage of Android’s ecosystem.

While the news is only confirmed, there’s no timetable as to when the update will be made available for the masses. Until then, stay tuned!

source: Crackberry

Latest Android Distribution Chart Shows Gingerbread Still On Majority Of Android Devices, But Jelly Bean And Ice Cream Sandwich On The Rise

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It’s February friends– so that means it’s time for the latest edition of the Android Distribution Chart highlighting what OS it is that us Android folk are using on our devices. Similar to what we saw in the last edition, Gingerbread is still on the vast majority of Android devices, but the overall number continues to decline at an almost free-fall rate. As of the time of this writing, Gingerbread is found on about 45% of all Android devices, down over 2% from the number seen in the previous Distribution Chart. In addition, the number of Jelly Bean devices continue to creep upwards as we are now seeing just a shade under 14% of all devices featuring a variation of Jelly Bean, while Ice Cream Sandwich also creeping upwards to 29%.

So yes friends we can finally breathe a sigh of relief— more and more of our devices are featuring current software (finally). Let’s just hope we see the overall number of Jelly Bean and Ice Cream Sandwich devices continue to creep upwards before Google’s next dessert arrives.

source: Android Developers

MoviePass releases Android version of app to support subscription movie service

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We are all familiar with the many services that are available for streaming, downloading, and viewing movies on your TV or other device. Using a subscription model, MoviePass is trying to bring a similar concept to the viewing of movies while they are still in theaters. MoviePass promises members the opportunity to view all movies in participating theaters with no blackout dates. To support the service, they have released their MoviePass app to the Google Play Store.
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AT&T fires up LTE in five new markets

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AT&T’s LTE service continues to grow. It’s not as large as Verizon’s, but I have to say that AT&T is doing a good job in their expansion. Those of you in the following cities can now enjoy LTE. Assuming you already have an LTE capable phone, you should see “LTE” under 4G as part of your range indicator. If you don’t have an LTE capable phone, then what are you waiting for?

New Markets:

  • Albany, Georgia
  • Dalton and Calhoun (Northwest), Georgia
  • Norfolk,  and parts of Portsmouth and Virginia Beach, Virginia

Expansions:

  • Elkton and North East (Cecil County), Maryland
  • Hatfield (Montgomery County), Pennsylvania
  • Doylestown and Chalfont (Bucks County), Pennsylvania

 

Samsung introduces the entry-level Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame

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Samsung just pulled the wraps off two entry-level devices called the Galaxy Young and the Galaxy Fame. They both resemble the Galaxy S III, but are much smaller. The Galaxy Young (above left) will feature a 3.27-inch (480 x 320)  display and a 3MP camera while the Galaxy Fame (above right) will sport a 3.5-inch (480 x 320) display and a 5MP camera. The Fame will also get NFC. The rest of the specs are identical for both phones: 1GHz CPU, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage, microSD slot, 1300mAh battery, and Android 4.2.1.

The Galaxy Young will be offered in white, deep blue, wine red, and metallic silver and the Galaxy Fame will be offered in pearl white and metallic blue. Last but not least, both phones will be offered in either dual or single SIM versions. No word on pricing, but we hear that they will become available in March.


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