At E3 2013 today, EA announced a unique twist on cross-platform support for a new chapter coming out in their Need for Speed series. Most people probably think cross-platform multiplayer support means being able to participate in the actual gameplay. For Need for Speed: Rivals, EA is including a unique feature that will enable tablet users to interact with the game and impact what is going on by acting as a virtual “spotter” for other players. As an example, users could call in support to the help the cops chasing a player.
The team over at Paranoid Android has announced they are open sourcing their HALO project. HALO brings Facebook Chat Heads-like notification functionality to Android apps, one of the few features of Facebook’s Home interface that actually received a positive response from users. Along with floating the notification on the screen on top of open applications, the HALO project gives users the ability to interact with app in a limited matter, like sending a response to a message.
Sprint has announced an official release date and pricing for its latest self-branded ZTE Vital smartphone; you’ll be able to snag the 5-inch smartphone for $99 (after a $50 mail-in rebate) starting June 14th. The Vital isn’t going to compete with the flagship phones of 2013, but for customers who want something with a larger screen without breaking the bank, its an excellent phone.
The Vital is powered by a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor and has a 5-inch 720p screen, 13 megapixel camera, a nice 2,500 mAh battery, and of course support for Sprint’s LTE network. It’s also running a relatively clean version of Android 4.1, so if you have a problem with OEM skins and you’re a Sprint customer, keep an eye out for this device in a few days.
Almost two months ago, Verizon extended their upgrade cycles for wireless customers from 20 months to 24 months. This basically meant customers had to wait a full two years to get a new device at subsidized pricing instead of the usual 20 months. Unfortunately for AT&T customers, AT&T is following suit and pushing their upgrade cycles back a full four months.
The only bright side here is that AT&T’s new upgrade rules don’t take effect until next March, where Verizon will start enforcing it next January. Either way, it’s not a particularly welcome change.
source: Phone Arena
If you’ve been anticipating HTC’s Butterfly S, you shouldn’t have to wait too much longer. According to some invitations being sent to Taiwanese media by HTC, the Butterfly S will be unveiled on June 19th. The invitation also says that the HTC Desire 600 may make an appearance alongside the Butterfly S. HTC will also probably announce locations and carriers for both devices.
There’s nothing specific about what we can expect to see from the Butterfly S, but considering the original HTC Butterfly is still an extremely capable phone, the upgrade is likely to be incremental. The inclusion of an Ultrapixel camera and Sense 5 with all the features like HTC Zoe and Blinkfeed are likely to be obvious inclusions, but we’ll probably see a bumped up processor, and hopefully we won’t lose the microSD card slot in the process.
We’ll be sure to keep you up to date as soon as HTC announces anything.
via: Phone Arena
Android 4.3 didn’t show up at Google I/O, but that hasn’t stopped it from showing up everywhere else on the internet. According to a recent Bluetooth certification, a 7-inch ASUS tablet with the model K008 popped up running the latest, yet-to-be-announced version of Android. We can’t get any other details from the filing aside from Android 4.3, so this raises more questions than it answers.
Not too long ago, we saw what appeared to be a Nexus 7 model get the same certification running Android 4.3, so its possible that this new tablet could be a separate 7-inch tablet ASUS has in the pipeline. Hopefully Google won’t take too much longer to clarify this and announce a new Nexus 7 soon.
source: Bluetooth SIG
Huawei is hyping up its latest smartphone in the Ascend lineup by showing pictures of the Ascend P6 on Facebook, shown above, and it looks to be an extremely attractive device. The ultrathin device is rumored to be just 6.2 mm thin. Not only is the device incredibly thin, Huawei is boasting about the attention to detail they’ve put into every aspect of the phone.
Sony announced a new addition to their line of Google TV devices, the NSZ-GS8 Internet Player. The device is the successor to last year’s NSZ-GS7. The big change for this year is the addition of voice search capabilities to the device. This is achieved just by speaking into the remote control and the unit will take things from there, displaying TV listings or search results if you happen to be surfing the web using the Google Chrome browser that comes on the unit.
Sony indicates sharing photos and videos from Android powered smartphones and tablets will be done seamlessly and wirelessly. Sony even makes sure those individuals stuck using an iOS powered device can use their Google TV device for viewing photos and videos through the Airtight app, which brings Airplay type functionality to the NSZ-GS8.
According to Sony, this new model will be available in Sony stores and other retailers starting in early July for $199. You can visit the Sony Store online to setup a notification for when the device is available for order. You may also notice the NSZ-GS7 has been placed on sale for $169.
source: Sony Blog
As we expected, today at E3 Mad Catz revealed their entry into the Android-powered gaming console market with the Project M.O.J.O device. The gaming platform will run on Android and will support both traditional Bluetooth devices and those running Bluetooth Smart 4.0 when that is available for Android. There will be two USB ports available for wired controllers or accessories and support for HDMI, WiFi and microSD cards to expand on the 16GB of internal storage expected to ship with the device. The devices is expected to ship with a C.T.R.L.R. Bluetooth controller. Mad Catz is also building in support for mouse devices to account for the fact that a touch screen will not be available. This support is expected to eventually include the ability for the game controller to function as a mouse via the joystick.
Last week we told you about MOGA’s new controllers featuring the ability to charge your phone while you are getting your game on. Turns out the MOGA Power Series Pro model will feature rumble tactile effects from the Immersion Corporation. I got a chance to spend some time with Immersion at CES 2012 and they gave us a hands on demo of some pretty cool stuff. If you remember, their haptic technology was featured in the Pantech Element.
“With this announcement, the MOGA Power Series Pro will be the first mobile game controller to feature rumble,” explains Eric Bensussen, President and Co-Founder of PowerA. “Working with world-class partners like Immersion is one of the ways MOGA maintains its leadership position in the mobile game controller industry. The response to our existing MOGA controllers has been fantastic, and we believe the next step is to enable developers to incorporate tactile effects, bringing immersive rumble feedback to mobile games. We’re pleased to be working with Immersion to bring that capability to developers creating MOGA Enhanced games.”
Immersion’s tactile feedback SDK for MOGA is now available to select developers. Full presser after the break.
Releasing a Mini version seems to be the rage these days. Now Oppo is diving right in with what appears to be a Find 5 Mini. The rumored specs include a 3.7-inch HD LCD display, a quad-core 1.2GHz MediaTek CPU, and 1GB of RAM. From the picture below, you can see that they will offer four colors options. It should be unveiled next month, and pricing could be between €199 and €299 ($263 to $395).
The ZTE NX402 was spotted at the Telecommunications Equipment Certification Center MIIT of China, which is equivalent to the FCC in the United States. It’s believed to be the little brother to the Nubia Z5 and will be called the Nubia Z5 Mini. Actually it really isn’t that much smaller when you consider the Z5 has a 5-inch display. The Mini will come with a 4.7-inch 720p (1280 x 720) display, a 1.5GHz quad-core CPU, 2GB of RAM, 8MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, and Android 4.2.2. At 10.3mm, this one is a little thick for my taste, but the 5MP front camera is intriguing. No word on when this one will launch. My guess is the third quarter, but don’t hold me to it.
The world pretty much knows it’s only a matter of time before we see the Galaxy Note III, but we at least have an idea of how the new iteration of the device will look like, thanks to a recent leak obtained by the fine folks at SamMobile. While the device shares some slight similarities with other larger Sammy devices, it is more likely that this device is a prototype of Sammy’s new reference design strategy thanks to a couple of things that stand out. The first item to point are the unique corners— while not exactly appealing, they are slightly rounded and give a good hint of what we can expect to come. The next few items are the ones that are almost a dead giveaway of a Galaxy Note III unit: the bezel is not only thin, but it also helps to ensure the stunning 5.99-inch Full HD display is in full view.
Of course this could just be yet another mystery device that may have been inadvertently leaked, but fortunately we won’t need to wait very long as IFA 2013 is right around the corner.
The leaks can stop because the Samsung Galaxy Ace 3 is now official. Just like it’s predecessors, it’s a budget phone. Translation: This would be a pretty hot phone if it were 2010.
The Ace 3 has a 4-inch WVGA (800 x 480) display, a 1GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage, microSD slot, 5MP rear camera, VGA front camera, optional Dual SIM, and Android 4.2.2. No word on availability or pricing, but Samsung did say they will offer 3G and LTE versions. Hit the break for the presser and full specs.
As Samsung continues to push the envelope with its popular Galaxy Note family of devices, is it possible that we may see an even larger edition of the S Pen-wielding toy? It sure seems to be the case as the latest rumors out there indicate a 12.2-inch device is on the way for release somewhere around Q3 of this year. According to ET News, the tentatively titled Galaxy Note 12.2 will not only be larger in design, but will include some high-end specs including a stunning display with a 2,560 x 1,600 resolution— the same one that’s found in the Nexus 10 tablet. In addition, rumor has it that the display will be manufactured by Sharp in some of the batches and will feature IGZO display technology.
Unfortunately, that’s all the deets that we have for now, but we’ll be sure to give you guys any new info we may stumble upon.
source: ET News