Google confirmed to not charge OEM licensing fees for Google Mobile Services

Android_Army_02

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.

TalkAndroid Daily Dose for January 23, 2014

TalkAndroid_Daily_Dose

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!!

Apps

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

Nexus 5 in red photographed, likely just a victim of Photoshop

red_nexus_5_unofficial_vietnam_leak

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.

Source: VietNamNet
Via: Webtrek

Dual-SIM Samsung Galaxy S III Neo+ is now official in China

samsung_galaxy_s_III_neo+

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.

Source: Samsung
Via: GSMArena

Spotify app updated once again, now includes artist touring details

spotify artists

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.

T-Mobile Xperia Z1s owners can now claim their free one-year subscription of PlayStation Plus

xperia_z1s_press

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.

KatKat update for HTC One to be certified on all major US carriers by next week

Verizon_HTC_One_03

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. 

Source: @HTCUSA

New Sony Xperia Z Ultra promo video shows off screen size

Sony_Xperia_Z_Ultra_WiFi_only_tablet

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.

Video of color options for Nexus 5 is fake

179787-whitenexus5

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

Motorola updates gallery application on newest line of devices

Moto Camera

Motorola continues to push small updates to users of its newest line of devices by adding core apps to the Play Store that are compatible with the Moto X, the Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra, Droid Mini, and the Moto G. The gallery app now features an entirely new user interface, including a slide-out side menu, larger thumbnails, a timeline of pictures, quick access to the camera roll, and albums in a more familiar layout.

You can get the new update in the Play Store— just follow the link after the break.

Google updates news alerts with new features, formatting

new_google_alert_format

Google users who take advantage of Google’s email alerts based on searches may have noticed a new format that rolled out over the past week. The emails that show up in a user’s inbox incorporate many of the “card” design cues that Google is spreading throughout their services. The format draws more attention to headlines and separates the stories with dividers. 

Acer planning to jump on wearable tech bandwagon, adding 4G capability to portfolio

acer_officials

In a new interview Acer’s vice president for the corporate business division, Peter Shieh, has revealed Acer is planning to get into the wearable tech market during 2014. According to Shieh, Acer “actually demonstrated our products to some of the company’s clients at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month. The company is still developing certain types of wearable devices. We certainly aim to play a role in the new market.” Shieh did not specify what form the new devices may take. For now, it seems most companies are pushing to get smartwatch type devices onto retail shelves, although a variety of smartglasses are also in development.

Press images of the Galaxy Note 3 Neo leak, unfortunately it won’t be coming to the U.S. or UK

GALAXY-Note-3-NEO-Leaked-Press-Image-01

The Galaxy Note 3 Neo is already available for pre-order in Belgium, but it hasn’t even been officially announced yet. It obviously has to be close because the press images are already available. The latest rumor is that it will be on January 27, but there is a little bad news for those of you in the U.S. and the UK. Samsung has already confirmed that there are no plans to bring the device to either country. We are not sure what the reason is. Maybe for once, Samsung has decided not to confuse consumers with yet another variant?

Hit the break for more images.