Pinger offers free voice calls and texting to Android users

So-called free text and voice alternatives have long dominated the Play Store, each with their own unique set of limitations and caveats. Pinger, however, is a new application, and while it’s mostly more of the same, it also manages to squeeze in a few additional features that direct competitors have been missing.

Similarly to Google Voice, Pinger will provide you with a personal phone number which can be given to friends and family. The same number can be used regardless if the person on the other end is using Pinger or not, meaning mobile to mobile, mobile to landline and vice-versa are all supported. You’ll also get a personal voicemail inbox, so contacts can leave voice messages in the event that you are unreachable. Incoming calls are free, though you’ll need to pony up some extra cash to buy minutes for outgoing calls (new users receive 20 minutes free). Currently the full service is limited solely to the United States and Canada, though free text messages can be sent in an additional 35 countries.

As with these types of applications, there are several limitations. For starters, Pinger SMS works only between two Pinger users, meaning you won’t be able to exchange photos or videos friends who aren’t using the service. Also, because Pinger is a VoIP application, you’ll need an established data connection to utilize any of the service’s functionality. And, with data fees becoming increasingly more expensive, the idea doesn’t seem too tempting. Catch the official PR after the break.


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Special Edition HTC One S coming to Taiwan, makes U.S. customers jealous

One of the best phones on the market is about to get a little bit better. A Special Edition HTC One S has been profiled on HTC’s Taiwanese website, packing an upgraded  1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 processor over its S3, along with four times the storage, 64GB vs 16GB. It will only be available in Taiwan, but it’s sure to be a hot commodity for the unlocked phone market.

Source: HTC Taiwan

PlayMG announces new MG pocketable WiFi Android gaming system for “young people”

Any parent with kids can attest to the problems created when one of them notices you playing Angry Birds or something similar on your Android powered smartphone. Inevitably, said kid will relentlessly pester their parent until they can borrow the smartphone to enjoy some Android gaming action. PlayMG Corp. hopes to address that problem and help parents “reclaim” their smartphones with the introduction of the MG, a pocketable WiFi-capable Android gaming system targeted at youth ages 5-18. If you are familiar with the relationship between iPod Touch to iPhone, you should understand the concept. The MG is basically an Android smartphone without the phone. According to PlayMG’s press release, the intent is to fill the void for kids who are too young to have their own Android smartphone or whose parents find phone and data plans to be cost prohibitive. PlayMG has taken some steps on the software side to orient the device’s use for youth gaming, incorporating features like strong parental control apps and a “Digital Wallet” allowance type system for the purchase of games and apps.

This new device is now available for pre-order on Amazon.com and at PlayMG.com. A special pre-sale price of $149 is available until November 4th when the price goes up to the regular retail price of $169. PlayMG will include an 8GB SD card to go with the 4GB of internal memory and up to $40 worth of preloaded games and a prepaid SpendSmart Mastercard for future purchases. Hit the break for the full press release.
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Now available in the Play Store: Real Soccer 2013

Calling all soccer fans: Gameloft just released Real Soccer 2013 in the Google Play Store. This game is sure to compete with FIFA 12 and any other soccer game released for Android. Gameloft calls this the “most immersive soccer simulation” with improved graphics, moves and for the first time in a Real Soccer game, personal names and portraits of over 3,000 pro soccer players. Check out the Play Store link below to get the free download and run a soccer club the way you want.

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Play Store Download Link

Glympse gets major update and adds Glympse Groups, Calendar Integration, and ‘Where Are You?’

I’m a huge fan of Glympse. It’s simply the best real-time location sharing app available. I use it all the time when traveling to visit family or when I’m running around in a million directions and need to let my wife know where I am. This amazing app just got a whole lot better with a brand new update that brings some really nice enhancements.

Glympse Groups is perfect for meetings, sporting events, or get togethers. It lets you create a pre-defined group that allows several people to share their real-time locations with each other for a set amount of time. Group names can be any name you want as long as it begins with “!”. So if you’re meeting some friends at the ball game, you can create a group called !FenwaySox. All users have to do is send a Glympse to that group name, and everyone will be able to see each other’s location in real-time. Users can turn off their location sharing whenever they wish.


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Sprint to release Samsung Galaxy Note II on October 25th for $299 on contract

Getting a jump on other carriers, Sprint officially announced availability and pricing for the Samsung Galaxy Note II this morning. The new device will be available beginning October 25th, the day after Samsung’s event presenting the Galaxy Note II in New York. The phone will be available for $299.99 in either Marble White or Titanium Gray with a two-year contract or eligible upgrade,. No word on what pricing will be like with less than a two-year contract or upgrade. Hit the break for the full press release.
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Alltel Wireless Announces The Alcatel One Touch Ultra 960C Smartphone, Comes Stuffed Full Of Gingerbread

 

Those of you in the market looking for a modest phone on a modest wireless carrier may want to pay attention right now. Alltel Wireless has launched the Alcatel One Touch Ultra 960C that is now available both in retail stores and online. The device looks to allow Alltel customers to do the absolute basics without too much hassle thanks to a 1.4GHz processor, 5MP camera plus 720P video, built-in DLNA and Gingerbread 2.3 (sigh).

While the device’s specs are not exactly the most desired, the price may be. The device will be priced at $19.99 on-contract or if contract’s don’t tickle your fancy, the device is available for a desirable $199.99. Yup— the price of the Alcatel One Touch Ultra 960C suddenly made it look pretty appealing for many folks out there– especially since . You’ll find additional details of the device once you check out the full presser after the break.

 


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Google Partners With LG UPlus To Bring Google TV To Korea

 

As Google TV expands outside of the States and confirms its intentions to take over the world, it’s only fitting that it begins to invade itself into the homes of prospective markets in booming countries. With that said, Google has achieved a major collaboration with LG UPlus to bring IPTV set-top boxes to Korean households with Google TV preloaded. What this means is that Korea becomes the tenth country in the world utilizing the service, so users of the service will be able to dabble in all of the traditional Google TV goodies including apps like Search, YouTube, Google Play and Chrome.

The exciting this is this is the first IPTV provider to offer a Google TV experience, so this should open the door for many more offerings in the near-future.

source: Google TV Blog

 

ASUS Announces The PadFone 2, Keeps The Phone/Tablet Party Rolling Along

 

After countless leaks and much speculation, the next great phablet phone/tablet hybrid is here. ASUS has formally announced the PadFone 2 and it will come jam-packed with lots of sweet features. Packed inside, the PadFone will have a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor matched with 2GB of RAM, a stunning 4.7-inch Super IPS display for the smartphone (10.1-inches for the tablet add-on), a beefy 2,140mAh battery and of course, Ice Cream Sandwich. Oh and least we forget the device will have up to 64GB of on-board storage.

Naturally, the successor has to look even more appealing visually than the original, and the PadFone 2 does just that. For starters, the smartphone itself will weigh just 135 grams and come in at 9mm thickness. In addition, despite the larger display and hefty internals, the combination of the tablet and station comes in at just 649 grams in total weight. In fact– what’s even more stunning is the fact the the PadFone 2 and PadFone 2 Station can actually combine together and still weigh less than most tablets available in the market today.

For those of you abroad, the PadFone 2 will be launched before the end of 2012 in Europe and Asia. While the PadFone 2 won’t be available in the States (for now), fear not— because availability in other countries will be announced at a later date. Hit the break for the full presser.


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T-Mobile strengthens its 4G network in Kansas City, more markets to follow

T-Mobile has officially announced a slew of improvements to its 4G network in Kansas City, Missouri; and has promised to bring more enhancements to markets around the country in the near future. As for T-Mobile customers in KC, you should now start seeing much improved data and voice connection in select locations like Arrowhead Stadium, Westport, as well as Jackson, Wyandotte and Johnson counties.

This is undoubtedly great news for T-Mobile, who has struggled with spotty coverage in rural parts of the country (including Missouri). Be sure to sound off in the comments if you’ve noticed any significant changes in coverage in the Kansas City area.

Source: T-Mobile