Google has really been ratcheting up their Google Wallet app the last few weeks. The release of Android 4.4 saw the ability for Google Wallet to be used for on any device regardless of the carrier, which was a major hurdle for Google to get past on the way to greater adoption. Earlier this week we saw Google release a physical card connected to a user’s Wallet account so they can make payments anywhere a debit card could be used. Google has now released an update to the Android app that adds the ability to add a credit or debit card to the account just by taking a picture with the device’s camera. Google claims the number and expiration date will be captured automatically. Hit the break for download links. Read more
Here’s some good news if you own Samsung’s Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy Note 3. Android 4.4 KitKat should arrive in just under three months. According to a leaked schedule obtained by iTechAddict, Samsung plans to update those two flagships in January. They list the Galaxy S 3 and Galaxy Note 2 to receive KitKat as well. Those two are scheduled to receive the update in March or April. Samsung is likely pegging their flagships for a January update due to HTC announcing its plans to have KitKat ready by then for the HTC One.
Via: GSM Arena
First we heard that Samsung was in talks with suppliers for a metallic Galaxy S 5 to launch in 2014. Then it seemed like they would just opt for the faux leather back of the Galaxy Note 3. But courtesy of Nowhereelse.fr, we have a look at what would be metallic casing for the GS5. The images were taken by a subcontractor that Samsung hired for the job.
Now there are a few things that indicate this could all just be your usual fly-by leak that develops into nothing. The slot for the camera has been shifted to the left, but Samsung tends to leave them in the middle of their devices. Also, the headphone jack is on the bottom, something new for them as well. And there does not seem to be enough room for a USB 3.0 port that is likely to be utilized given its appearance on the Galaxy Note 3. Even if this isn’t the actual casing for Samsung’s 2014 flagship, we sure hope it is metal because everyone is just about done with the fingerprint-friendly plastic from the GS4.
Hit the break for the full gallery. Read more
We were very excited when Motorola announced Project Ara last month, which could bring modular smartphones to fruition in the near future. We have an update that is making us even more excited, and that is that Motorola has entered into a multi-year development agreement with 3D Systems. 3D Systems will be the exclusive fulfillment partner for Motorola, and will manufacture 3D-printed Ara smartphone enclosures.
We still don’t have an idea of when we will see modular smartphones from Motorola and 3D Systems since they are still in the developmental stage, but it’s certainly nice to know that things are moving along. Hit the break for the full presser.
A mystery Samsung device has been spotted in Europe with the model number SM-G7105, much like the Chinese one that had the model number SM-G7106. This new leak has the 5.25-inch smartphone packing 4G LTE radios, a 1.2Ghz quad-core processor, 1.5GB of RAM, and Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. The cameras come in at 1.9MP for the front and 8MP on the back. There are no additional details, but we think it’s safe to say that this is slated to be a mid-range smartphone.
There’s no question the Chromecast might be the coolest new device of the year, but the lack of apps is a little disappointing. The reason is because the SDK is still in preview, which means apps can be developed, but they can’t be released without Google’s approval. Eventually the SDK will be released, which will open it up to all sorts of stuff, a day we are eagerly looking forward to.
Now that day might be very close because Google is hosting a Chromecast Hackathon in Mountain View on December 7th and 8th. They have invited a number of developers, including Koushik Dutta and Thomas Kjeldsen. We have highlighted a few apps that Koush created in the past including AirCast.
Motorola is continuing their trend of moving apps to the Play Store for quicker updates. They already moved the Motorola Camera as well as Touchless Control, and they just added Motorola Connect and Motorola Assist. Motorola Connect syncs your phone to Chrome so that you can read and reply to texts as well as see who is calling you on your desktop. Motorola Assist will take certain actions when your driving or in meetings. For more information on both, see our Motorola Guides: Motorola Assist / Motorola Connect
These apps are only available for the Moto X and the new line of DROIDs, the DROID MAXX, DROID Ultra, and DROID Mini. If you own one of these phones, you don’t need to download the apps since they are already on your device, but we do have the Play Store links for reference.
Play Store Links: Motorola Assist / Motorola Connect
The Android based Ouya gaming console is still relatively new, but it’s never too early for a good update! Just days after the announcement of a limited edition white version of the console, an update to the software of the system has been announced that brings a revamped UI and USB storage. The update is called Abominable Snowman.
The new UI brings a new white theme, getting rid of the old orange color scheme. The wallpaper and featured games in the UI can be updated on the fly, and game tiles are now much better organized. It is also much easier to see which games are new and which have updates. Future updates are also set to start being incremental, so you should be getting updates on your Ouya much more often.
With the holiday shopping season upon us, Dead Zebra is ready to serve up a new series of collectible figurines for the Android fan. Series 04 is similar to last year’s Series 03 as Dead Zebra has teamed up with artists like Andrew Bell, kaNO, Kronk and Scott Tolleson from last year and new artists like Kong Andri, Sergio Mancini, Fakir and Shawnimals. Dead Zebra only says the new collectibles will be available for order or purchase in the next few weeks. If you are looking for a gift for an Android fan or need to give someone an idea of what they can get you, check them out. Read more