Nook 8GB Tablet Launching Wednesday, Ups Competition With Kindle Fire

Following an announcement earlier this month, Barnes & Noble  seems to be preparing an imminent release for their newest Nook tablet. The 8GB version seems to be pretty much the same as the $249 version, just packing less internal storage. This will obviously mean the tablet will come at a cheaper price, now becoming closer in competition to the Kindle Fire. All that’s known for sure about the upcoming release is that WalMart is planning to release them on Wednesday, February 22nd, and the tablets should have already arrived in stores.

source: the verge

Sky Go App Available Now in the UK, Only on Select Devices

At the end of January we told you about how the British television company Sky would be bringing those folks in the UK an app for watching TV on the go. Fast forward to now and that announcement has become a reality. Like we told you before it is only available on select HTC and Samsung devices with more being supported over time. With the app you will be able to watch up to 22 live channels based on your TV subscription. They include:

  • All 4 Sky Sports channels plus Sky Sports News and ESPN
  • All 11 Sky Movies channels
  • Sky Atlantic
  • Sky 1
  • Sky Living
  • Sky Arts 1
  • Sky News

If you live in the UK, have one of these devices, and are interested in downloading this app you can follow the Market link or QR code below. Some things to keep in mind though include the fact that this doesn’t work on Ice Cream Sandwich, or tablets yet, and if you are rooted don’t bother as you will be denied access. While we don’t expect Sky to ever allow root users to use the app (until developers get a hold of the app) we do expect to see ICS support in the future. If you meet these stringent requirements then head on over to the Market to get your taste of UK television on the go. Enjoy!

Android Market Link

ZTE Adds High-End PF200 And Low-End N910 LTE Android Devices To The Lineup

ZTE is stepping up their game a notch and rather than waiting until MWC to show off their new flagships, they’ve spilled the beans a little early.  The company has just announced two devices to cater to the high and low-end’s of the mass mobile market.  The two devices will sport Android 4.0 right out of the gate and we should be able to get a hands-on in Barcelona soon enough.  The high-end device, dubbed the PF200, comes with a 1.2 GHz dual-core CPU (unknown manufacturer), 4.3-inch qHD display, 8 meg camera and 2 meg front facing camera for video chatting and portraits.  It’s also capable of recording 1080p video and comes locked and loaded with radios supporting LTE, UMTS and GSM technologies.  Add DLNA, MHL (mobile high-def link) and NFC and we can see how serious ZTE wants to be/stay relevant in the mobile market.  As for the N910, the device is touted as a low-end, more budget friendly and economically sound device sporting LTE FDD, CDMA/EVDO radios, a 5 meg camera, 1080p front facing camera (2 mp), an 800 x 400 res display and a 1.5 GHz processor as well.  We don’t have pricing or a release date yet, obviously, but we can tell you this, according to ZTE these devices are just the beginning for what’s yet to come:

“These LTE devices are the fore-runners of a wide range of LTE devices ZTE will bring to the market in the coming months, and as more and more LTE networks come on stream,” said Mr. He Shiyou, Executive Vice President and Head of the Terminal Division of ZTE. “They will be feature products – among a very wide range of devices on display at the ZTE stand at Mobile World Congress 2012.”

Can we speculate that a Tegra 3 device is on the way?  I sure hope so.  Check out the full presser and another press shot after the break.


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LG Introduces NFC Wielding Optimus LTE Tag

When we first brought to you news of the original Optimus LTE we were pretty impressed. A 4.5-inch AH-IPS display is nothing to shake your head at. Well LG is changing it up a bit by adding a lower-specced Optimus LTE device to the line that replaces the amazing 4.5-inch display with a smaller 4.3-inch IPS display and NFC capabilities. The NFC, known as LG Tag+, will allow the device to “talk” with stickers that can automatically switch settings on the handset depending on location. If there is a sticker on your dash your device could turn Bluetooth and GPS on while also bumping up the volume. Heading into the office, your phone automatically turns to vibrate mode while also turning on the WiFi.  Besides NFC the device has the following specs:

  • Chipset: 1.2GHz Dure-Core processor
  • Display: 4.3-inch (800 x 480) IPS
  • Memory: 16GB eMMC
  • Camera: 5.0MP with AF-LED Flash (Rear) & 1.3MP (Front)
  • OS: Android 2.3 Gingerbread
  • Battery: 1,700mAh
  • Others: LG Tag+, MHL(Mobile High Definition Link), DLNA(Digital Living Network Alliance)

Given that Sony is gearing up its own NFC campaign with its SmartTags it appears that everyone is trying to get on the NFC bandwagon. However Sony didn’t go the same route LG has. LG has decided to fully relaunch the device in Korea as the Optimus LG Tag. If you’re interested in reading more on the device check out the Press Release below. Enjoy!
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Google goes after Foursquare with the launch of Leaderboards, Could be tied to Google Offers.

Foursquare is the King of check-ins, but it looks like Google is about to get into the game with a new feature as part of Latitude that will most likely find its way to Google+. You already have the ability to check-in now, but they’ve added a new feature called Leaderboards, which will rank you based on number of check-ins at each location. Nothing new here, but it’s possible this really isn’t about being the Mayor of Starbucks. The incentive here might have something to do with Google Offers. In a post on the Google support forums, it talks about different status levels including Visitor, Regular, VIP, and Guru. They also suggest that each business could customize the names of these status levels and icons.

In this same post, they discuss Google Offers, but don’t tell us about a direct connection between the two. Reading between the lines, I would think that Google’s plan is to tie this with Google Offers in that the higher your status, the more likely you will be to receive special offers. At this point Google Offers is still at its infancy stage, but I would still suggest checking-in as much as you can now because I would assume it will be counted as Google Offers grows to more locations.

The real question is how many apps do we need to check-in these days? What are you guys using and are you willing to use more than one app for checking-in?

sources: google support, engadget

Sony Releases Xperia SmartTags App in Android Market

We first reported about Sony’s SmartTags last month, and it looks as though the official SmartTag  app is now available in the Android Market. This is not currently all that useful since you need to have a set of SmartTags and a compatible NFC-enabled phone. Right now, Sony’s SmartTag site lists the Xperia S as the only compatible phone, though it seems it does work on a Nexus S (see the video below) and presumably on any NFC-capable device, such as the Galaxy Nexus.


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Oracle’s Case Against Google Crumbling

Given that Android and its respective manufacturers are having a tough time against Apple these days it would be nice to see a win for Google and the Android platform altogether. Well boy do I have good news for you folks as Oracle is seeing its patent suits against the search giant crumble down around them. Unofficially known as the suit to end all suits, it was the one that could have effectively killed Android as a platform with its required royalties. This would probably force Google to charge manufacturers to use the platform. While the patent dispute was postponed that didn’t mean that the wheels weren’t turning behind the scenes.

For those that don’t know, Oracle bought Sun and valued the transaction at “approximately $7.4 billion, of $5.6 billion net of Sun’s cash and debt.” Broken down this includes, the hardware, MQL, Solaris and other aspects that encompass more than just Java. But the Sun Microsystems acquiring company valued six, dropped to five, out of 500 Java patents at $6 billion dollars. This figure obviously being over hyped. 
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LG Spectrum Easily Rooted

The same developer who brought us the “Motofail” root method that roots most Motorola devices, has turned his attention to Verizon’s LG Spectrum. LG devices have not been difficult to root in the past, and root-magician Dan Rosenberg’s comments confirm that fact, stating simply, “Yawn. LG loses, users win.”

Check out our LG Spectrum hands-on video, then hit up the source link below to grab the files necessary.

source: vulnfactory
via: droid-life

Huawei Posts Teaser Pics for Ascend D1 Q

Huawei’s press invite for Mobile World Congress already told us the Ascend D1 Q would be their fastest smartphone yet. Now, they have gone ahead and released some teaser pictures of the device. This marks a departure from Huawei’s current reputation of putting out budget devices. The pictures do seem to show a more elegant profile, dare I say reminiscent of HTC designs. See for yourself:


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Qualcomm showcases the Snapdragon S4 ahead of Mobile World Congress

We’ve already heard about Qualcomm’s latest processor, the Snapdragon S4, which will be quad-core and utilize LTE. Qualcomm took the time to give us some details ahead of Mobile World Congress. The new SoC now supports up to three cameras (two in the back for 3D and one front-facing), 20-megapixels, and recording video at 1080p (30fps). We can also expect zero shutter lag, 3A processing (autofocus, auto exposure and auto white balance), and improved blink/smile detection, gaze estimation, range finding and image stabilization. Last but not least, it supports gesture detection/control, augmented reality, and computer vision (via Qualcomm’s FastCV).

Hit the break for a couple of videos featuring image stabilization and gestures.


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