We’ve had Verizon’s HTC One confirmed for “later this summer,” and now we’re starting to see Big Red’s version of the device get some certification to make it all the more official. The latest comes from the Bluetooth SIG which has just certified the HTC One for use, which is a big step in getting the device on store shelves.
It’s unfortunate that we can’t get any type of release date confirmation from this type of certification, but hopefully HTC and Verizon won’t keep us waiting too much longer. Maybe we’ll see that elusive red version of the One with Android 4.2 on board before the holidays get here.
Android 4.3 doesn’t appear to be anything drastic, but it is just full of under-the-hood changes. The latest change deals with Android’s powerful notification system, and, believe it or not, actually makes the notification shade even more robust. The biggest problem with many third-party apps in the Play Store today is that the only thing that can directly clear or touch notifications created by Android or other apps is the Android system itself. Many apps like DashClock have hit this roadblock, and things like smartwatches have definitely struggled to use workarounds to keeping notifications synced and cleared up.
A recent change discovered in Android 4.3 is new code dealing with Android’s notification system, complete with a settings shortcut to notifications history. This change would allow things like DashClock or Google Glass to manage your device’s notifications without having to clear them on the notification itself. This would be a gigantic asset to the swarm of impending smartwatches on the market, as well as many other kinds of wearable technology that pairs with your Android device.
Hopefully we won’t have to wait too much longer for Android 4.3 to become official so we can see this in action.
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!!
Google has updated Glass to a newer version of software with a handful of new features, including some additional voice commands and a brand new browser. The voice commands are extremely helpful, as Glass users will now be able to use verbal commands to make Glass narrate content such as text messages. Telling Glass to “read aloud” will cue it to read the contents of a text out to you, and you’ll now be able to tell Glass to create a reply text for you, completely hands free. You can also scroll through your Gmail contacts and compose texts by scrolling through and tapping a contact’s picture from Glass’s main menu. It isn’t as fancy as the totally voice controlled texting, but a nice feature nonetheless.
Although not generating any recent buzz as a leader in the mobile chip market, Intel is rattling things up a bit as Intel Korea’s CEO Lee Hee-sung came out with some comments in a recent interview about increasing aggressiveness in the mobile device field. The current target of Intel’s partnership efforts is Samsung, which has started advertising their upcoming Galaxy Tab 3 devices with Intel chips.
MyBackup Pro continues to be one of our favorite apps for backing up precious data. It’s simple enough for the casual user and powerful enough for those that love to change ROMs often. Recently, Rerware updated MyBackup Pro with the new “Migrate” feature that allows you to transfer your data from one device to another if it’s on the same WiFi network. My Backup Pro normally costs $4.99, which is a steal when you consider everything it does. Just check out our hands on review to see.
When the folks at Rerware came to us and said they would like to give a free copy to twenty of our lucky readers, are we going to complain? Hell no, so here’s your chance to grab a Free copy for yourself. We are going to keep this one very simple. Just comment below telling us which phone you are using right now. What could be simpler? You have until Wednesday at 12:00pm EST. We will then pick twenty random winners and announce them here. Just make sure that you are using a real email address because that is how we are going to contact you.
Hit the break for a hands on video showing you how the new “Migrate” function works as well as a funny commercial spot.
Once the Google Play Edition Samsung Galaxy S 4 hit stores last week, owners of the carrier based S4 were immediately jealous. Now Verizon S4 users don’t have to be, as developers have made the stock Android Galaxy S4 ROM available for their devices. The developer says it is a port from the GT-I9505, but it isn’t specified if it’s from the Android 4.3 or 4.2.2 build.
There are many versions of the ROM available, including one with blacked out Google Apps. You can go make your Verizon S4 stock through download via the source link below. While the Verizon S4 is the first lucky device to get a port, it surely won’t be the last.
Remember the failure that was HP’s webOS? Now HP wants to have a second go at the smartphone market. In the Indian Express, HP Senior Director of Consumer PCs and Tablets for Asia-Pacific Yam Su Yin revealed that the company is working on a new smartphone that will offer a “differentiated experience.” We don’t know anything besides this initial remark – not even if they are working on an entire mobile operating system, or simply just a device that could run on Android or Windows Phone.
The company’s focus will still be concentrated on tablet, notebook, and PC lines, however it could be very difficult to emerge in a market that currently seems to have its bases covered. Of course, Yin, who says “HP has to be in the game,” says a timetable is not yet available. Stay tuned to Talk Android as we keep you updated on HP’s latest foray into the smartphone market.
Although the HTC Droid DNA has only been around for about seven months, Verizon has put the device on sale for $50 with a two-year contract in an apparent move to start making way for a new Droid device or possibly the HTC One. We already had word that Verizon was starting the end-of-life process for the Droid DNA. This latest move to cut the cost is consistent with that news.
Skype got a snazzy new user interface earlier today, and fellow Microsoft app OneNote has followed suit. The company announced today that OneNote’s iOS and Android apps are getting a completely new UI for a more consistent looking experience across all devices. New mobile rich editing allows tables, text, and layout to look the same, no matter where you’re taking notes.
Home screen widgets have been added that allow quick text. picture, and audio notes. In addition, a new search and tagging function and support with Office 365 and SharePoint have also been added. The updated app is available for free in the Play Store immediately, through the link after the break.
Groupon is no stranger to having some pretty sweet deals every now and then, but who would’ve guessed it would offer what some of us thought was hands-down the best phone for 2012? That’s right gang— Groupon is offering an unlocked variant of the HTC One X smartphone last year for a reasonable $349.99. Unlike the traditional unlocked version that features a Tegra 3 chip plus HSPA+ radio, it appears that this unlocked model (HTC-PJ83100) will “only” sport a dual-core Snapdragon clocked at 1.5GHz and Ice Cream Sandwich (ugh!). Fortunately, this model will have the same 4.7-inch 720p display, the sweet 8MP camera and oh yes— a built-in 4G LTE radio… though it’s probably likely it will only be made for AT&T bands should you choose to take advantage of the capability. Otherwise, the HSPA+ bands should be compatible for both AT&T and T-Mobile.
Naturally there are other $349.99 options out there like the Nexus 4, but keep this in mind: the Nexus 4 doesn’t feature LTE and an unlocked One X model is more than developer-friendly, meaning that there’s plenty of potential for you tinkerers out there. Nonetheless, interested parties will want to act soon— as of now, there’s only 8 days left for the awesome deal.
In other not-so-surprising news, Android is the dominant platform in most major markets worldwide. According to Kantar Worldpanel, Android-based devices are away and by far the dominant devices in Italy, Spain, Great Britain, France and Germany— countries which account for over 70% of the European market. Oh and don’t think Android’s dominance is limited to just Europe either— Kantar Worldpanel indicates that over 70% of all Chinese smartphones run Android, also placing Android head and shoulders above iOS and Windows Phone devices. The perceived culprits for the explosive growth? In Europe, it’s Samsung as it is responsible for almost half of all smartphones sold in the top-5 countries; in China, it’s probable that the likes of ZTE and Huawei help to spark the growth of the Android platform.
While Android has a healthy lead outside the States, it is still worth noting that the other platforms are still alive and kicking as well. Kantar highlights iOS-based devices currently hold a 41.9% market share in the U.S., an increase of 3.5% over the same period last quarter. Conversely, Android saw its existing market share lead grow only marginally, from 51.9% to 52.0% over the same period last year. Oh and despite Windows Phone’s lack of popularity out here in the States, it too is experiencing significant growth in Europe as it saw its market share grow an average of 2.5 percent points in the measured top-5 European countries.
Skype announced today that they have passed through the 100M install mark on Android devices and at the same time, announced the release of Skype for Android 4.0. The new version of Skype was rebuilt from the ground up to improve stability, performance and load times to go with the new features and interface for Android devices.
According to Skype, much of the inspiration for the redesign came from the work the team did on the Windows Phone version of the app. Skype wanted to bring the same conversation-centric focus to Android users. Along with the improvements to the interface, Skype says the app increasingly has a common look and feel across platforms which will be welcome news to users who access Skype on more than just their Android device.
The new version of the app opens to a list of recent conversations. From there, users can quickly send free text messages within the app or launch instant messaging, audio calls, or video chats. Skype indicates they will be rolling out more changes and improvements in the coming months.
If you want to grab a copy of Skype or need to upgrade, hit one of the download links below the video showing some of the new features and interface elements.
XDA Senior Member bitstra has developed “Bubble Launcher,” a home-screen launcher that’s pretty refreshing and unique in terms of navigation and design. Though it’s very similar to a sidebar application, as it docks itself to the side of your screen, it still has much of the functionality of any other launcher.
The launcher is navigated through the action of swiping— swiping down lets you view all of your apps in a list format, and swiping outwards or towards the middle of the screen will allow you to use a bubble-like knob, which can be spun so that you can find the app of your choice. Swiping upwards shows the settings, which give you the option to set the launcher’s activation spot, toggle animations, and change the size of app icons.
This is certainly a really nice concept, especially the bubble-knob— it may not be for everyone because of the “bubbly” interface, but it’s definitely worth checking out. The app available for devices on Android 2.3 or newer. You can find the Google Play links after the break, as well as the APK file.
Another LG device was spotted in AnTuTu Benchmarks, and the speculation is that it could be the Nexus 5. It has a model number of LG-F320 and scored 32,000 points with its 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 CPU. I know a lot of people are hoping for a Nexus 5, but this is probably a G2 variant for Korea.
Remember, LG confirmed they aren’t working on a Nexus 5. Of course, shortly after, it was reported that they produced a prototype, but there are a lot of prototypes that never hit the market. I am still on record as saying there won’t be a Nexus phone this year, and instead, it’s going to be just Google Edition and Motorola phones from here on.