Kobo to release Arc 7″ tablet featuring Ice Cream Sandwich and Tapestries

by Sean Stewart on
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Even though Kobo’s last attempt in the 7″ tablet market didn’t go so well, it isn’t stopping them from going after that two-headed monster – the Nexus 7 and the new Kindle Fire. Last November Kobo released the Vox tablet to very little fanfare and while it wasn’t a terrible tablet, it just didn’t offer anything special to separate it from the Kindle Fire or Nook. Well this year is a new year, so maybe they’ll have better luck this year beginning with a name change from Vox to Arc.

The Arc, which is due to arrive in November in 8GB ($199.99) and 16GB ($249.99) versions will be somewhat comparable to the Nexus 7 in some aspects. The Arc 7″ tablet will run on Android 4.0 and sport a 1280 x 800 display. It’ll also come with a front-facing camera and 1GB of RAM, however it will not have 3G capability or GPS. Additionally, the tablet will not have its own app store, but it will provide access to the Google Play Store. While none of these features are particularly cutting edge, Kobo is hanging its hat on one exclusive selling point in what they’re calling “Tapestries.” This feature builds a library of recommended apps, books, and games based on your habits. We’ve obviously seen features like this before on other products as well as third-party apps so we’ll have to wait for a hands-on before any further judgment is passed. Although, the first impression is that it’s not providing anything too revolutionary here.

We aren’t quite sure where this tablet will fit into the hot 7″ tablet market. With the Nexus 7 coming out of the gates strong and the announcement of a cheaper new Kindle Fire today, it’ll be tough sledding for Kobo and their Arc to get a foothold in this market. However, we will find out for sure come November. What are your thoughts on this piece of hardware and it will fit into this crowded market?

source:  gigaom

 

 

 

 

Amazon announces 7-inch and 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HDs, along with an updated Kindle Fire

by Jeff Causey on
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Amazon hyped their press event for today and had Internet sites abuzz with expectation leading up to it, with everyone guessing what they may reveal. It appears Amazon did not disappoint with the introduction of new devices sure to have a major impact on the world of tablet devices. The highlight will almost certainly be Amazon’s introduction of an 8.9-inch version of their tablet, dubbed the Kindle Fire HD.

Running at 1920×1200 resolution with 254 ppi, the 8.9-inch screen is made with a new laminated touch sensor that Amazon promises will reduce glare by 25%. Backing the display is a TI OMAP 4470 processor, 16GB of internal storage, Dolby stereo with dual speakers, dual wifi antennas, a front-facing HD camera, and HDMI out. This top of the line version of the Kindle Fire HD will run $299 and Amazon says it will be available starting November 20th, just in time for Black Friday’s shopping rush. Amazon will also have a 4G LTE model available for $499 and a $49.99 per year data plan. There will be a data cap of 250MB per month and 20GB of cloud storage available. » Read the rest

The new Kindle Fire is 40 percent faster and $40 cheaper

by Robert Nazarian on
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Amazon unveiled new tablets today and the first one was an updated version of the Kindle Fire. You can’t complain when the specs go north and at the same time the price goes south. The additional hardware includes a faster processor that makes it 40 percent faster, an extra 512MB of RAM (total 1GB), a bigger battery, and a front-facing camera. Other than that, it’s still a 7-inch display. The best part of all of it is that it’s priced at $159, $40 cheaper than last year’s model. Pre-orders will start soon and it will be available on September 14th.

It continues to be a forked version of Android, but the market they are going after doesn’t care. I still prefer the Nexus 7, but what do you guys think?

 

Verizon Hints at Future “Google Experience Devices and Tablets”

by Winston Gordon on
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A recently leaked Verizon memo may be giving us an indication of potentially future plans by the nation’s #1 wireless network. The memo talks about future devices such as the newly announced DROID RAZR M being preloaded with a suite of Amazon apps such as the Amazon Appstore marketplace and Audible. However, the memo does have a major notation: while most future devices will have the Amazon suite preloaded, the memo does specifically exclude all “Google Experience devices and tablets.”

Since Google Experience devices are generally Nexus devices, is this a sign that Verizon is expecting at least one Nexus model this fall? Of course Verizon may not have any future Nexus devices planned and just want to cover themselves in case an opportunity comes up later. Though if you remember back a few months to rumors of 5 different nexus devices being released this fall, maybe one of them will be a 4G LTE Nexus.

This is all speculation right now, but Verizon would not have specified this if they did not believe it was at the very least a reasonable possibility. Would you be interested in another Nexus device exclusively on Verizon’s Network?

Source: Droid Life

Eggbones releases Blind Ninja:Sing to Google Play

by Jeff Causey on
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Fans of side-scrolling action games may want to check out a new title from Eggbones software – Blind Ninja: Sing. In the game, users guide their Ninja, Sing, across roofs, avoid falling houses, and slash their way through scarecrow enemies. The game features accelerated gameplay  for both the player and the enemies the longer and farther you guide Sing. Along with the faster speeds, as enemies are killed, Sing gains new combo moves. Do note that the permissions are rather extensive, though it is not clear why. Eggbones may possibly be planning some social media integration for the future.

If you are interested in trying out Blind Ninja: Sing for 99 cents, hit one of the download links below.

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Google Play Download Link

Motorola Confirms Most 2011 Phones Will Get Jelly Bean Update, Those That Don’t Will Be Eligible For $100 Credit Towards Upgrades

by Roy Alugbue on
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In the midst of Motorola announcing the newest additions to the DROID RAZR family yesterday, it also announced a few important pieces of information for owners of its devices released in 2011. First thing’s first— most owners of the devices launched in 2011 will get the coveted Jelly Bean update, which follows MOTO’s previous pledge to keep its existing devices as up to date as possible. This means that many of you owners will have a slight glimmer of hope and a reason to possibly keep those Atrix 4G, Atrix 2, DROID Bionic and DROID RAZR smartphones. Again, we’re seeing a very heavy influence from Google, as MOTO’s announcement is nearly identical to what Google does for its Nexus line of smartphones.

Of course not every 2011 phone will cooperate with Jelly Bean, so MOTO has you covered as well. If it decides that your 2011 device will perform at an unacceptable level with newer software and decides not to upgrade to Jelly Bean, MOTO will offer a $100 trade-in credit for you to use towards a new device. Before you ask— the credit is only good towards new Motorola devices, so you can’t pull a fast one and try to score that HTC or Samsung phone you’ve been itching for. Such is life we suppose.

Finally MOTO is taking a page out of Samsung’s book and will begin to release developer editions of its devices, in case you have a carrier that isn’t too keen on customers fiddling with its devices. Additional details of this program will be shared as Motorola begins launching the special-edition devices.

 

 

DROID RAZR M unboxing and initial hands on review [Video]

by Robert Nazarian on
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Motorola is going after the budget market with the DROID RAZR M, but this isn’t a low-end phone. The highlight of this phone is that it features an edge to edge 4.3-inch display with barely any bezel. This means the phone itself is smaller, but still gives you decent screen real estate. Let me show you what I mean. The DROID X had the same display size, but the dimensions of the phone were 5.02-inches by 2.58-inches. The DROID RAZR M comes in at 4.82-inches by 2.04-inches, and it’s also 1.6mm thinner. Another example is the The DROID Incredible 4G LTE, which is the same size physical size as the RAZR M, but the display is only 4-inches.

The DROID RAZR M display happens to be qHD (960 x 540), which is a little bit of a bummer, but for $99 you can’t complain. The rest of the specs include a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, microSD for up to 32GB of additional storage, 8MP rear camera, VGA front-facing camera, NFC, WiFi, GPS, Bluetooth 4.0, and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Motorola promised it will receive the Jelly Bean update by the end of the year.

» Read the rest

Amazon Releases Teaser Promo Of New Kindle Fire Before Today’s Announcement

by Roy Alugbue on
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Looks like we won’t need to wait any longer for the new Kindle Fire since Amazon has “leaked” a teaser promo highlighting the newest addition to the Amazon family. Amazon subtly displays an obvious tablet, one with no sort of identification and no branding. Instead, Amazon highlights the potential a consumer can do on a simple tablet– reading shopping, viewing sports content, etc. The ad effectively highlights Amazon’s concern of making consumers’ lives just a little better.

Of course the teaser left many who saw it wanting much more. Fortunately we won’t need to wait too long as we’re just hours away from Amazon’s big announcement later today.

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Samsung reaches 20 million units sold milestone in record time for Samsung Galaxy S III

by Jeff Causey on
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In a press release issued today, Samsung has announced the popular Samsung Galaxy S III phone has achieved 20 million unit sales. This milestone was reached in only 100 days since its debut in May 2012. This pace is faster than any predecessor model from Samsung. Popularity of the model may have been helped by Samsung’s release schedule for the device which was well ahead of many other manufacturers. During 2011 Samsung overtook Apple in worldwide smartphone shipments according to Strategy Analytics. The outstanding sales performance of the Galaxy S III will help Samsung in trying to maintain that position in spite of Apple’s forthcoming iPhone update. Hit the break to read the press release. » Read the rest

Radio Shack and Cricket pair up to offer new contract-free plans and two devices to go along with it

by Macky Evangelista on
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Radio Shack and Cricket have come together to offer a couple of new contract-free mobile plans along with two devices for budget friendly customers. Here’s what you can expect:

$25 per month

  • 300 voice minutes
  • Unlimited data access
  • Unlimited texting
  • Call waiting
  • Three-way calling.

$35 per month

  • 1000 voice minutes
  • Unlimited data access
  • Unlimited texting
  • Call waiting
  • Three-way calling.

$50 per month

  • Unlimited voice minutes
  • First gigabyte of data will run at full 3G speeds
  • Unlimited access to music through Cricket’s Muve Music service

$60 per month

  • Unlimited voice minutes
  • First 2.5GB of data at 3G
  • Tethering
  • Unlimited access to music through Cricket’s Muve Music service

To go along with these new plans, Radio Shack is offering two separate devices. First we have the Huawei Pillar, a feature phone equipped with a QWERTY keyboard, a built-in camera, and access to the mobile Web for $39.99. The Pillar is available through either the $25 or $35 feature phone plan.

Then we have the Huawei Mercury Ice Android smartphone. Powered by a 1.4GHz processor and Android 2.3, the Mercury Ice offers a 4-inch WVGA screen and an 8-megapixel camera. The phone will cost $149.99 and can be paired with either the $50 or $60 smartphone plan.

Any Cricket users out there willing to give these plans/phones a shot?

source: c| net