If you own an unlocked Galaxy Note II, you’re in luck. SamMobile has gotten their hands on some pre-release firmware of Android 4.3 for Samsung’s phablet for you to play with. It’s definitely not a daily driver, but hey, at least we know Samsung is going to make good on their promise to update these devices.
The update brings the Note II up to speed with the S 4 and Note 3, especially in the UI department. It has the tabbed settings interface, as well as a few more subtle changes throughout the OS. Samsung Wallet is present, as well as Samsung Knox. There may be more features added before development is halted, but that’s what we’re looking at currently.
If you’re interested, you can download the firmware at the link below. However, if you don’t know what you’re doing or you don’t have the GT-N7100 model of Note II (which means no US carrier variants) leave this one alone for a bit.
The first television commercial for the Samsung Galaxy Round has officially been released. The Galaxy Round, if you remember, is the world’s first curved smartphone that will only be available in South Korea, at least at first. It’s basically a curved Galaxy Note 3 but with a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED that curves at the sides. The commercial plays on the rounded nature of the phone, showing a hand holding multiple rounded objects before showing the same hand using the Galaxy Round.
Check out the TV spot after the break.
Yesterday @evleaks tipped us with a press render of the Nexus 5, and today they have done it again, but this time our favorite new phone is dressed in white. This confirms the leak we saw last week. However, there is one difference, only the back of the phone is in white while the front remains black. Looks pretty cool doesn’t it?
There is also one more juicy bit of information and that is a date of November 1 was revealed. We can only assume this is the date that the Nexus 5 will become available, but it could be just the announcement date. It could also mean the announcement and the launch because Google could make it available in the Play Store immediately after the announcement. As always, stay tuned.
We had another busy week at TalkAndroid so here’s a recap of all the top stories. The Nexus 5 watch continues and this past week appeared to be the calm before the storm. We didn’t see many leaks so the release has to be imminent. Could we go another week without an announcement? By far, the biggest news of the week had to be BBM hitting Android and iOS. Over 10 million people downloaded it in the first 24 hours. T-Mobile continues to threaten big carriers with yet another amazing deal, this time on tablets. It’s time to get caught up and get ready for another exciting week.
Xtorm launches solar power pack accessory for Galaxy S4
Main focus of Android 4.4 Kit Kat could be Android TV
Apps – New
BBM for Android to hit Google Play today in phased rollout
Learn how to use BBM with these 6 instructional videos
How to bypass the BBM waiting list and start messaging right now
Aereo television streaming service now available in Play Store, available only in select regions
Switching between active Android apps is a breeze with Switchr
Motorola Spotlight Player Now Available in the Play Store for the Moto X
As Android 4.3 updates for HTC One owners have been rolling out around the globe with a variety of carriers this past week, one group has been left out in the cold – Verizon customers. Jason Mackenzie, President of HTC America, indicated in a tweet today that HTC was working on the issue and expected to issue a status update on Monday. Hopefully some good news will be forthcoming from HTC and Verizon on when customers on the carrier can expect to receive the update for their devices.
Google could be positioning itself for a large presence in the music industry. Lyor Cohen, former Chairman and CEO of Warner Music Group, has started a new label and Google could be an investor. According to the New York Post, Cohen has turned to Google to make “music-related investments.” If Google does indeed invest, they may seek Cohen’s new company to be a part of YouTube’s music streaming service that could launch in the coming months. Cohen manages Rick Ross and has connections with Jay-Z and Russell Simmons. With names like that, Google may definitely want to get its hands on Cohen’s secretive venture.
Source: New York Post
With Google possibly holding their Kit Kat / Nexus announcement on Monday, leaks are imminent. Less than an hour ago, Twitter leaker @evleaks tweeted out “Nexus 5, by LG, 2013″ with the image above. It lines up perfectly with the leak from last Thursday night. On the back of the device is the usual Nexus logo, now horizontal when in landscape, with LG’s name below. Both the notification bar and navigation menu are transparent. Also, the notification bar has white icons. Folders and the apps button have the low opacity backgrounds. Now if only @evleaks could give us something more on the Nexus 10.
The Android community is going crazy trying to predict when KitKat will launch, and KitKat is having some fun with it. They have sent out numerous vague tweets and photos that have gotten people going mad trying to predict a release date. The latest tweet is a photo of a bowling ball with seven Kit Kat shaped pins, with overlaying text saying “Have a break, Have a Kit Kat.” A bowling ball has three holes, meaning that Kit Kat will launch in three days, right?? At least, that’s what some people think.
The said tweet was sent out yesterday, so we’ll wait anxiously to see if anything Kit Kat tweets today hints at two days remaining for a launch. Stay tuned.
Everything seems to be going great right now for Samsung. Last year’s Galaxy S III bested Apple’s iPhone in a touchscreen accuracy test, and the company has apparently sold more than 40 million Galaxy S 4 handsets. Now, Q3 of 2013’s financial numbers have come in. Samsung recorded a record profit of $7.76 billion. That is a lot of cash. While smartphone margins are plateauing, they have found success in chips due to their margins almost doubling since last year. According to The Wall Street Journal, “the importance of Samsung’s chip unit–comprised of memory and logic chips–is being highlighted as it now accounts for roughly one-fifth of its total operating profit.” That is a very impressive increase in both margins and growth. Samsung may put more of a focus on their chip business if margins continue to grow.
Amongst all of the cash that Samsung is sitting on, no one knows what they will do with it. The easy answer would be to acquire other companies, possibly to assist the launch of their inevitable wearable products.
Source: The Wall Street Journal
While many of us wait for the official release of Android 4.4 KitKat, most are still waiting on their OTA update of Android 4.3 to their devices, namely the Samsung Galaxy S 3, Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 2, and Galaxy S4 Active.
Blind waiting will no longer be necessary, as a document leaked earlier today which listed the update schedule for the aforementioned devices.
- Galaxy Note 2 (Verizon): November 29
- Galaxy Note 2 (AT&T): November 20
- Galaxy S4 (Verizon): October 28
- Galaxy S4 (AT&T): November 13
- Galaxy S3 (Verizon): November 22
- Galaxy S3 (AT&T): November 13
Note 2 owners, Galaxy Active owners, and owners of any of these devices on either Sprint or T-Mobile should check the image above for specific dates. With these 4.3 updates to these Samsung devices, Galaxy Gear support comes as well.
Keep in mind that the document states that these dates are subject to change, so nothing is set in stone.