T-Mobile is making a very bold move in regards to employee discounts for their customers, and this time, it doesn’t look like it’s a move for the better. Yesterday, CEO John Legere said the company will stop offering employee discounts on service, and no, you cannot keep yours if you had a discount before the cut-off date.
Legere says the move is to help keep up the transparency with T-Mobile’s Simple Choice plans. The rates are already so good for those plans, he claimed, that employee discounts just aren’t necessary. He takes a shot at other carriers using those discounts to close big corporate contracts and using employees/customers as bargaining chips, and says T-Mobile’s plans are still a better deal even next to another carrier’s plan with employee discounts applied.
Huawei has opened an online shop for U.S. customers based on one product, the Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G. At present, Huawei is only offering potential buyers the opportunity to sign up for their e-mail list to receive updates. Huawei touts the device’s download speeds of up to 150 Mbps on compatible networks. Which ones those may be is unknown since Huawei has not announced any carrier partners and may not ever get to that point due to the U.S. government’s suspicion that the company is actually a front for Chinese spies.
Lenovo has announced four new tablets that will be released during the second quarter of 2014. Employing a strategy similar to Samsung, Lenovo’s tablets will come in a variety of sizes ranging from 7-inch devices up to 10-inch devices. Although all of them will come equipped with quad-core processors, Lenovo is trying to make each version slightly different in an attempt to appeal to different consumer demographics. Lenovo VP and head of the mobile business unit, Shao Tao, says the new “tablet family is designed to meet the demands of today’s young, active users who are always on the go, and have lifestyle requirements that are as diverse as their own personalities.” The tablets include:
- A7-30, a 7-inch tablet packed with Dolby-enhanced dual-front speakers designed for music and multimedia enjoyment
- A7-50, another 7-inch tablet, but aimed more at readers with an HD display providing a sharper viewing experience, it will also come with 3G connectivity as an option, prices will start at £99.99 ($167 USD)
- A8-50, an 8-inch tablet with an HD display and Dolby audio, this model will come in a range of bold colors, though Lenovo has not specified what they will be, prices will start at £139.99 ($233 USD)
- A10-70, a 10.1-inch tablet with an HD display, especially suited for those who enjoy watching movies on their tablet, prices will start at £169.99 ($283 USD).
Lenovo says the devices will be available worldwide during the second quarter of 2014. Hit the break to read the press release from Lenovo.
We are big fans of SwiftKey, but I often wondered what it would be like if they could somehow bring their “Flow” feature to the desktop. Well today SwiftKey announced “Flow Hard”, which does just that. Now I can slide my finger from key to key on my desktop computer or laptop. Plus you get SwiftKey’s awesome AI predictions and autocorrecting. You can even type multiple words by using “Flow Through Space”, which allows you to drag your finger over the space bar to quickly type SwiftyKey’s predicted words.
With “Flow Hard”, I will easily save at least 2 hours a day. Check out the video after the break.
Each year, Samsung introduces a new line of Galaxy Tabs, and 2014 is no exception. They just introduced the Galaxy Tab 4 line with little fanfare, probably because they aren’t the most exciting tabs in the world. Just like the Tab3 series, they will offer three sizes: 7-inches (pictured above), 8-inches, and 10.1-inches and are clearly positioned in the mid-range tier.
The specs are primarily the same on all of them except for the storage options and battery sizes. All will sport 1280 x 720 LCD displays, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1.5GB of RAM, microSD for up to an additional 64GB of storage, 3MP rear camera, and 1.3MP front-facing camera. The 10.1 and 8.0 version will offer 16GB for internal storage, but the 7.0 version will be offered in both 8GB and 16GB varieties. As to batteries, the 10.0 has 6,800mAh, the 8.0 has 4,450mAh, and the presser didn’t specify the 7.0 version. They will offer Wi-Fi versions as well as 3G/LTE versions for all models.
No word on availability or pricing, but we will let you know as soon as we hear more. We can’t imagine pricing will be any higher than the current Tab 3 line. We have pictures of the 8.0 and 10.1 after the break.
If you thought for a second that Google was out of the hardware business, then think again. In what came out of nowhere, Bloomberg is reporting that Google just made a deal to buy Samsung Electronics for $200 billion in cash and stock. We aren’t talking just the mobile division folks, we are talking the whole shabang, including TVs, appliances, display panels, and semiconductors.
We found it hard to believe that Google would buy Motorola and turn around and sell it to Lenovo pretty quickly, but I think it’s clear that Motorola was too limited. Motorola only dealt with the mobile side, but in order for Google to bring Android to the next level, TVs and appliances need to be in the mix as well. Owning both companies at the same time would certainly be an antitrust issue.
With hectic schedules, it can be hard to keep track of everything in your news feed. That’s why we created the TalkAndroid Daily Dose. This is where we recap the day’s hottest stories so you can get yourself up to speed in quick fashion. Happy reading!!
April Fools’ Day Jokes
Google April Fools’ Day jokes for 2014
Samsung Fingers gets announced, the first entrant into the smartglove game
HTC unveils the revolutionary new wearable HTC Gluuv
Moto X and Moto G get new April Fools’ Day boot animation
If you own a Moto X or Moto G, be sure to head into the Play Store and update your Boot Services app. Then reboot your phone to see Motorola’s new April Fools’ Day boot animation. It features a UFO, Bigfoot, and the Loch Ness Monster. You will also find the new “Powered by Android” branding at the beginning of the sequence. This isn’t part of the April Fools gag, but something Google is mandating for all Android OEMs moving forward.
For those of you that don’t have a Moto X or Moto G, hit the break for a quick video.
Smartwatches are lame, and HTC isn’t afraid to tell everyone that. Instead of wasting time developing something that no one would want, HTC has (probably) spent millions developing the wearable tech of the future, the HTC Gluuv.
Designed to function as a companion device to the new HTC One, the Gluuv is, well, a glove. It fits perfectly on your hands and puts tons of different technology literally at your finger tips. The Social Fingerz of the device let you gesture to interact with different social networks, so you can “thumbs up” that restaurant you just visited on Facebook, then take an “armie” in front of the restaurant with the Gluuv’s phenomenal 87.2 megapixel camera.
The Gluuv is the wearable device we’ve all been waiting for. Who’s ready to buy one?
source: HTC Gluuv
Smartgloves are here. Samsung has announced Samsung Fingers, a wearable glove that has everything and the kitchen sink. And 5G connectivity. This is not your ordinary connected glove. Samsung Fingers has a built-in speaker and microphone, so yes you can communicate with your hand. Making sure the processor does not get behind is 4GB of RAM, more than your smartphone, and 32GB or 64GB of storage is available.
Being that this is a wearable, there is a variety of sensors. They include an accelerometer, thermometer, gyroscope, barometer, ambient light sensor, barometer, and compass. Did I mention that a 3-inch wide flexible display is located on the palm? Oh, and there is S Laser. This is a beam projector that has a 1080p resolution. Samsung Fingers weighs just one gram.
Samsung has yet to give a release date, but more information can be found when you hit the source link below. Happy April Fool’s Day.
Source: Samsung Tomorrow
Earlier today, an HTC Butterfly owner was wondering where the Android 4.4 KitKat device was. On Facebook, where the Butterfly owner left his concern, was answered briefly by HTC. The company said the update “should indeed be coming soon, Potchi. Stay tuned.” A great sign for both consumers and HTC as the Butterfly was released in December 2012. Extended support for software updates is always a way to keep everyone happy.
In the United States, the Butterfly was released on Verizon with the DROID DNA name. That update is expected later next month if it hits the targeted approval date of the second week in April.
Source: HTC (Facebook)
Sprint has begun pushing out the Android 4.4 KitKat update to their version of the LG G2. The changelog for the update isn’t very detailed, listing that it’s just an upgrade to Google’s latest version of Android and a fix for Sprint’s Next Radio audio problems. You’ll still get all of the improvements that KitKat brings to all devices, however.
If you own a G2 on Sprint’s network, be sure to start periodically checking for the update. Let us know in the comments if any of you have gotten it already.
Expanding the network of retailers offering the Pebble smart watch, Pebble has announced Target will be carrying the devices for $149.99. As part of a special promotion, Target will be the exclusive retailer for the Arctic White version of the smart watch for a limited time. Jet Black and Cherry Red versions of the device will also be available.
In making their announcement about availability at Target, Pebble highlights some ways the smart watch can be used to help “Pebblers” stay fit. These include apps like the Couch to 5K running app or the 7-Minute Workout app.
If you are interested in a Pebble, you can head on down to the closest Target location or visit them online at target.com to place an order.
The Moto X has been out for the better part of a year now, but Republic Wireless is finally adding Moto Maker customization options to their variant of the phone. Beginning at 9AM PT on Tuesday, Republic Wireless customers will have access to all of the colors and finishes that other carriers have had.
In addition, Motorola is including free wood or bamboo backing to the first 2,000 customers who order from Republic Wireless’s website. As a last addition, Republic Wireless is now offering a 32GB Moto X, which was not an option previously.
Source: Republic Wireless
Apple and Samsung were scheduled to return to the courtroom today in the latest round of legal disputes between the two smartphone giants. Unlike the first trial that focused heavily on hardware issues, this new round will emphasize software, especially features found in the Android and iOS operating systems. That focus on software features found in Android means Google will play a much larger role this time around.