64GB Samsung Galaxy S III makes an appearance on Italian retail website

For those Samsung Galaxy S III owners residing in Italy that think 32GB just isn’t enough internal storage, you’re in luck. We can’t exactly say that we’re surprised at this finding. After all, we got wind of the 64GB Galaxy S III back in July and August, but the details were a little vague. However, now the 64GB Galaxy S III behemoth has popped up on the Italian retail site, ePrice. True to the Samsung spokesperson’s word back in July, the “market availability” will indeed be limited – at least initially. Obviously available in Italy via ePrice, there’s still no word on UK or US availability. As for the price of the device in Italy, you’re looking at an eye-popping, wallet-crushing €800 ($1,040). Samsung may be testing the waters in Italy so to speak, or they may have a well laid out worldwide release. We shall see in the coming weeks.

source:  Engadget 

Google Play TV shows, Movies, and Music now available on Google TV

Beginning today, Google TV users will have access to Movie, TV and Music content offerings from the Google Play Store. Similar to smartphone and tablet interfaces, purchases can be made directly from your big screen, and content that has already been purchased will automatically sync over to your TV. Additionally, developers have also received a major set of long-awaited features for Google TV including subscription based billing, auto-updating and smart app updates.

These features serve as much welcomed additions to Google TV, and hopefully indicate that Google isn’t quite ready to give up on the platform. So, do you own a Google TV? What do you think of the new features?

Source: Google

Samsung did not copy the iPhone, say uncensored court documents

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you have probably been following the ferocious legal battle between Samsung and Apple. Despite a guilty verdict, new documentation has revealed that Samsung may not have told its designers to copy the iPhone.

Documents that were initially redacted during the trial have been released in their full form, and what is contained within them is disheartening. While early reports surfaced claiming that a Samsung executive told the company’s designers to “make something like the iPhone”, the actual document quotes the senior executive as saying, “I hear things like this: Let’s make something like the iPhone.” When everybody (both consumers and the industry) talk about UX, they weigh it against the iPhone. The iPhone has become the standard. That’s how things are already.”

Unlike previous accusations, there is no actual wording to suggest that Samsung intentionally copied the iPhone. Instead, the executive lamented that in order to be successful, “you must think at least six months ahead; be the solution to the problems that related departments come looking for. Be people with creativity. Designers rightly must make their own designs with conviction and confidence; do not strive to do designs to please me (the president); instead make designs with faces that are creative and diverse.”

Samsung clearly defends its “original” industrial design in the statements above, going on to state, “our biggest asset is our screen. It is very important that we make screen size bigger, and in the future mobile phones will absorb even the function of e-books.” However, the company did admit that at one point its team faced a “a crisis of design,” as it told its designers to “do their best not to create a plastic feeling and instead create a metallic feel.”

So, if Samsung clearly touted its much larger display as a differentiator from a branding standpoint, how could the jury accurately conclude that it purposely copied the iPhone? It’s believed to be the way that Apple’s lawyers presented the evidence that swayed the jurors’ opinions, neglecting to bring up important evidence and selecting minuscule pieces of what would obviously favor the Cupertino-based company.

Regardless, there will undoubtedly be more drama in the legal battle, as things aren’t expected to cool off anytime soon.

Source: CNET, Groklaw

T-Mobile to launch Samsung Galaxy Note II on October 24th?

Good news for those T-Mobile customers wanting somewhat concrete evidence of the Galaxy Note II‘s release:  According to TmoNews, they’ve come across a screen capture of an internal T-Mobile memo outlining their plans for the Note II release. According to the “unofficial blog of T-Mobile”, it looks like we’ll see this beast in the wild beginning October 24th which, maybe not so coincidentally, coincides with that little Samsung event in New York. Furthermore, it’ll supposedly come in two colors – white and gray. Please remember that we should still treat this solely as a rumor at this point.

As a refresher, the Note II on T-Mobile’s network will be its first device to ship with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box, as well as their first Samsung quad-core device. The device will also ship with Samsung’s TouchWiz interface sitting atop of Android 4.1 to go along with its 5.5-inch Super AMOLED HD (1280 x 720) display, 1.6GHz processor, and a beefy 2GB of RAM. Let’s just hope the battery can somewhat keep up. According to the screen capture, it looks like we may find out more on October 15th. Stay tuned.

source: TmoNews

T-Mobile and LG officially announce LG Optimus L9

Well, now we can say that it’s official. Last week, we reported images of the LG Optimus L9 complete with T-Mobile branding were leaked. Today, T-Mobile and LG have officially announced its availability. LG is touting the device’s sleek, stylish, and thin frame (.36-inches thin) to go along with its 4.5-inch qHD display, 1GHz dual-core processor, and long-lasting battery. Pricing and a solid release date have yet to be announced, other than the vague “fall” release window. However, it’s safe to say that we’ll probably see the sleek device by November. If interested, you may also want to keep checking T-Mobile’s device page on its website since it may be listed as “Coming Soon” in the coming days. Hit the break for the full press release.
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Leaked user agent profile reveals the C650X ‘Odin’ to be the next Sony Xperia flagship

The Sony Xperia T just came out, but you know Sony is already hard at work on their next flagship (and probably the one after that). A leaked user agent profile has revealed a phone codenamed Odin with a few model numbers; C6502, C6503, and C6506. That last number being the only different number could point towards regional variations. Unfortunately we don’t know too much more other than it’s running Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean.

There are also two more devices that were revealed, but not as high profile. They are similar to the Xperia tipo and Xperia miro and their model numbers are C1505 and C1604/C1605. They both sport HVGA (480 x 360) displays and Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich. The C1604/C1605 sports a Snapdragon S4, while the CPU for the C1505 is probably the same, but it’s officially not known.

source: gsmarena

Native Facebook app for Android in final testing

It was only a few weeks ago when we reported that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg regretted using HTML5 for the Android app and promised a native app soon. I guess he wasn’t joking because it looks like the promised app is now in final testing so we could see it soon. I know a lot of you hardcore Facebook fans are clamoring for something decent. I really don’t care about the app, just make the widget work right. Stay tuned.

source: engadget

HTC posts more financial losses in latest quarterly report

HTC released third quarter financial results today, and the trajectory is not good. For the fourth consecutive quarter, profits were down, this time by a whopping 79% compared to the previous quarter. Net income for the third quarter was down to $133 million compared to $247 million for the second quarter. Third quarter revenue was down to about $2.4 billion USD, which missed their guidance issued in August calling for revenue of $2.5 billion USD. Looking forward, the downward trend is expected to continue for at least a fifth consecutive quarter.

HTC’s chief executive officer Peter Chou has urged HTC employees regain a “sense of urgency” and try to avoid bureaucratic drains on the organization. However, analysts like Kevin Chang with Citigroup Inc. in Taipei see “further share looss in the U.S. and Europe” as HTC battles with Samsung and Apple for market share. HTC has been stronger in China, but even the success there is being dampened by “white box smartphones”, unbranded phones that increasingly are providing strong competition to the big name phone makers like HTC.

source: Bloomberg

New colors for Samsung Galaxy S III coming to Verizon

Visitors to the Verizon web site today were greeted with an offer to sign up for notifications about a couple new colors for Samsung Galaxy S III devices. Both black and brown will be available from Verizon, joining blue and white versions. No word on pricing, though it is hard to imagine they would sell for anything other than what the current versions go for. No word on a projected release date either, but it is probably not too far in the future.

source: Droid Life

Sprint Launches StarStar Me, a vanity number service

In this age when people hardly ever remember new numbers longer than the time it takes to put it in a phone, Sprint has started a service to change that. StarStar Me will allow subscribers to assign a new dial code to their phone that starts with two star signs and then a name or number, **SARAH in the picture. This service costs $2.99 and also provides “custom text messages when they’re busy, as well as a unique way to share links to their blog, website or social media accounts.” There is an app available now to accompany the service that helps manage calls and automate text messages. Hit the break for the full press release.


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