Earlier today, The Guardian ran a story explaining how Google charges a licensing fee for any OEM that wants to include Google’s Mobile Services on their devices. Those services include things like Google Maps, Gmail, and the Play Store, all of which are extremely integral to what most people consider the best Android experience. Reportedly, Google charged about 75 cents per device (75k per 100,000 devices) to OEMs, which could fluctuate slightly depending on the OEM. According to 9to5 Google, however, that’s not actually the case.
A statement made by Google officially said that they do not charge licensing fees for their mobile services. They do still have some steps and guidelines for getting a device approved to ship with Google Mobile Services, but having deeper pockets doesn’t (officially) move things along. It’s a possibility that the fees could refer to some other agreements with OEMs, which Google almost definitely makes, but those aren’t related to Google services. Read more
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Motorola updates gallery application on newest line of devices
VNC Viewer from RealVNC now free (from $9.99) in the Play Store
Updated Photoshop Express now available in Google Play
Spotify app updated once again, now includes artist touring details
Over on Vietnamese site VietNamNet, an image of the Nexus 5 in red has surfaced. The source claims that the device will be released between the end of next month and the beginning of March. They also said they are unsure whether or not all markets will get the device.
Earlier today we found out that the Nexus 5 color options leak was ultimately fake. For some reason, I also have a hard time believing that the image above is indeed a real Nexus 5 in red. For all we know, this could be yet another victim of Photoshop. Carry on, everyone.
Samsung has announced the Galaxy S III Neo+, a dual-SIM smartphone for China. We thought too that the next device announcement from the company would be the Galaxy Note 3 Neo. This device, however, is designed very similarly to the Galaxy S III from 2012. Behind its 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display is Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. The display has 306 pixels per inch, 720p resolution.
Under the hood is either the Exynos 4 or Snapdragon 400 processor with 2GB of RAM. While the architecture is unknown, we do know that it is a 1.4GHz quad-core processor. In usual Samsung fashion, the 8GB internal memory is joined by a microSD card slot. The dual-SIM feature supports 850/900/1900/2100 MHz WCDMA network bands and 850/900/1800/1900 MHz GSM.
Beats Music has been out for just a few days and barely even works— don’t tell me you forgot about Spotify already!
Today, Spotify released a new update to its app which adds a new section in Artist views. The section includes details on touring for artists, and provides full Google Maps integration for directions. You can also buy tickets through the app, essentially making Spotify your one-stop-shop for all things music.
Here’s the, uh, ehrm, change log:
Improved: Spotify Connect will be on its best behaviour when you play radio.
Fixed: We’ve tickled some pixels and dealt with some crashes.
Fictitious: This app was assembled from old clock parts.
Hit the break for the link to the app in the Play Store.
If you purchased a Sony Xperia Z1 after January 13, you’re now eligible to receive a free one-year subscription of PlayStation Plus. The service offers free games each month to owners of the PlayStation 3 and 4, and PS Vita. The games stay free for as long as your subscription lasts.
The promotion ends on February 12, so if you haven’t bought an Xperia Z1 yet, you still have time. The last day you can claim the subscription is March 5.
In a surprise announcement on its Twitter account, HTC USA said that final KitKat software has entered carrier labs for final testing. They also noted that we should expect certification for all four major US carriers next week.
Certification is currently in the third of four stages involved in pushing out OTA OS updates to devices. Shortly after passing carrier certification, the update should start getting sent out to devices.
More progress should be announced next week, especially considering how transparent HTC has been with the update process as of late.
The new Sony Xperia Z Ultra is the biggest phone that Sony has made to date, coming in at a whopping 6.44-inches. In fact, that’s big enough for Sony to have launched it as a WiFi only tablet in Japan. Sony has created a pretty smart marketing video to back the device, aiming at specifically showing off the large screen size on the Xperia Z Ultra. Hit the break to check out the video, as well as the “making of” video to see how they made the Xperia Z Ultra look so large.
Yesterday, a video of color options for the Nexus 5 in the Play Store appeared online. Since, it has been discovered that the photos are fake and have been Photoshopped. There are some other hints in the video as well, as the Play Store behaves differently in the video. When you go to the real product page and try to switch between colors, a separate page opens, with a different URL— nothing changes in the video, signaling that it is fake.
Source: Phone Arena
It may not come with the same branding and reputation that Google’s Chromecast does, but Airtame certainly has plenty to boast about.
Airtame, the result of an Indigogo crowdfunding campaign, received $1,268,148, going way (way, way, way) over its initial $160,000 goal. Yeah, a lot of people believe in this product.