Three flaws Google needs to fix to make stock Android even better

Our favorite little green robot has made a lot of progress over the last four years. From humble (and ugly) beginnings with Android 1.0 to the smooth and sleek styles of Jelly Bean 4.2, we have seen some tremendous growth and progress of our favorite mobile operating system. Google has worked hard at ironing out the kinks and improving the user interface with some exciting new features. The result has been a much smoother, better, faster, prettier operating system, but it has surprisingly left some simple yet important features out in the cold. Here are three features (or lack thereof) that I believe are major oversights in Google’s current OS.


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New Huawei MediaPad 10 Link surfaces on certification sites

China’s Huawei appears to have some new versions of their MediaPad 10 FHD 10-inch tablet set to be released in the near future. According to NotebookItalia, at least three different model numbers have surfaced at the WiFi Alliance and Bluetooth SIG sites. The models – S10-201W, S10-201U and S10-202U – have all received WiFi certification. Details are still sketchy, but it appears the 201U and 202U versions probably contain antennas for 3G and 3G/4G connectivity.

Dubbed the MediaPad 10 Link, the devices do appear to possess the MediaPad 10 FHD’s 10.1-inch IPS LCD HD display. NotebookItalia compared images of the new device with the MediaPad 10 FHD and noted some very minor variations in the cases. The question remains as to whether the new devices are low-cost alternatives Huawei is trying to bring to market or the next evolution of the MediaPad 10 FHD. Perhaps we will find out during CES 2013.

source: NotebookItalia

Featured Android Game Review: Word Search Little Books [Brain & Puzzle]

Oh boy do I remember playing word search when I was younger, so I was excited to find Word Search Little Books from SmartyPantsGaming. It’s been so long since I played, I forgot how much fun it was. I am sure there are other versions of this game in the Play Store, but Word Search Little Books gives you various topics to choose from like Animals, Food, Sports, Variety (4 versions), Cities, Comic Books, Harry Potter, Holidays, Movies, Music, Star Wars, TV Shows, United States, and Video Games. There are 17 books in all with 10 puzzles in each one.

Gameplay is as simple as pie. You just highlight the words with your finger, but if you own a Samsung Galaxy Note (I, II, or 10.1) you’re in for a real treat because you can use the S Pen to draw around the words just like paper books. Actually this game was originally for the Galaxy Note, but the developer modified it for all to use. Using your finger is fairly easy, but sometimes it’s hard to see if you’re finger is over the last letter or not before releasing it. This was only an issue when I first started playing, and I got the hang of it quickly.


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Heads Up: The Nexus 4 will be available to order in the Play Store today at 12:00pm PST (U.S. only)

Look what just hit the inbox! You read it right, the Nexus 4 will be back in stock at 12:00pm PST / 3:00pm EST today in the U.S. Last time Google didn’t even send an email out, but at least we knew the day. Any chance this will go smoother than 2 weeks ago? Just hit one of the links below this afternoon and get ready to refresh your pants off.

16GB version / 8GB version

Google+ integration with Play Store user reviews is now live

We heard that this was coming so it shouldn’t be a shocker that it’s officially live. Starting today, in order to post a user review in the Google Play Store, you will have to sign into your Google+ profile. You can look at this as both good and bad. The good is that now people just can’t post any comment without being known, which is going to be great for developers. Each review will have the person’s full name as well as the profile picture if they have one. On the the flip side, this is just another area in which Google is trying to jam Google+ down everyone’s throats. If you’re wondering about older reviews, they will simply say “A Google User.” So what do you guys think? Better or worse? I am leaning towards better. I am already on Google+ anyway so it’s not a big deal for me, plus (no pun intended) it gives more credibility to the reviews.


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Nexus 4 now receiving Android 4.2.1 update, fixes December bug while baseband remains unchanged

In very similar Nexus news to what we found this morning, the Nexus 4 is now beginning to receive the 4.2.1 update as well. This update most notably fixes the infamous December bug. No other changes have been uncovered as of yet. The good news is that the baseband has remained unchanged so far thus still allowing LTE capabilities for the select few. This update will be come by way of over-the-air so obviously not everyone will get it at once, but it should only take a few days for it to roll out to all devices. Are you a lucky owner of the elusive Nexus 4 that has also received the update? Let us know of any other changes you may find.

 

source: XDA Forums

Lenovo launches the P770 Android phone with 26 day battery life

No that is not a typo. Lenovo recently launched the P770, a new Android smartphone that boasts an incredible 644 hours (26 days!) of standby-time. The phone carries some junk in its trunk, sporting a hefty 3,500 mAh battery that bests the RAZR MAXX (HD) capacity by 200 mAh. Estimated talk time on the device is a little more humble, coming in at 29 hours of continual use. That means, according to Lenovo’s estimates, you could spend an entire day and then some making voice calls to friends before the P770 gave up the ghost. Pretty impressive! Of course, actual usage will provide varied results depending on how you personally use your phone. Still, it is good to see manufacturers putting more of an emphasis on long battery life because at times it has taken the backseat to more visible features like thinness and screen size (here’s looking at you Droid DNA).


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Nexus 10 Now Receiving Android 4.2.1 Update – Fixes December Bug

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Look what just appeared on my Nexus 10 around midnight tonight. Yes, that’s Android 4.2.1! This is a small 1MB update that fixes the now infamous December bug. Other potential changes could include improved battery life and stability, but without an official changelog that’s just speculation at the moment. In any case, this is the magic of the Nexus program… quick updates with no manufacturer or carrier interference.

Anyone else get the update yet? Are you noticing anything different? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured Android App Review: invi – Is this how texting apps should be?

Texting has become the main source in communicating with your friends, family or people in general. It’s fast, easy and efficient. The people over at Invi Labs has taken the simplicity and functionality of a texting application and gave it a gorgeous UI along with some really great options and features.

Upon opening Invi, you’re greeted with a welcome screen and a short tutorial on what the app entails and what it offers. Just simply swipe right to continue until you’re hit with a “register” screen. Upon registering you’re prompted to choose a “banner photo” and a “profile” photo of yourself. In the screen shots below you’ll see what each looks like in the app.


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Verizon offering DROID RAZR M holiday special for $50

The Motorola DROID RAZR M may not be a top tier device, but it is certainly a capable Android smartphone. As we found in our review, the RAZR M offers a lot of bang for the buck when purchased from Verizon for $99. That equation has improved significantly for the holidays as Verizon is now offering the handset for only $49.99 with a two-year contract. This is a good opportunity to get your hands on a relatively decent Android smartphone without breaking the bank. Hit the break to view Verizon’s promo video that includes the offer.
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