Google+ Now Accepting Nicknames and Alternative Identities

by Stacy Bruce on

I’m sure by now most of you have signed up for Google+ or at least looked in to it. Maybe you avoided the whole thing because you were required to use your actual name instead of a nickname or the like. Well, if that has been your only deterrent up to this point, I am happy to say you can go ahead and give it a shot now because nicknames are welcome. Google has finally agreed to allow nicknames and established identities as long as they are appropriate, that means no crude pseudonyms wise guy! The big G is going to monitor and delete those names they feel are inappropriate, but either way this is still a welcome addition for those who have been living under an alternative identity.

[via Google+]

LG Optimus Black Finally Sees Gingerbread Update in Europe and India, Global Rollout Imminent

by Stacy Bruce on
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Talk about a long time coming! The LG Optimus Black if finally starting to receive the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update and should hopefully hit all devices soon. Reports are showing that the overdue update has rolled out to folks in Europe and India already, so I imagine other countries will see it soon. The update will bring the Optimus Black up to version 2.3.4 (3 versions behind current Gingerbread), and will bring improved power management, support for new media formats, shortcuts, widgets, better camera auto-focus, and Google+ pre-installed. Word has it that you can get this update right now by using LG’s software update tool, but I cannot confirm this so if somebody is able to force the update let us know.

While it’s pretty late in the game, it’s nice to see that LG really can deliver because if you’ll remember, the Optimus Black was said to receive ICS sometime in Q3 of this year. Any bets on whether or not it shows up on time?

[via ubergizmo]


Huawei Honor with Ice Cream Sandwich to arrive by Valentine’s Day on China Unicom

by Robert Nazarian on
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The Huawei Honor is a really nice mid-level phone available on China Unicom. It’s going to get that much better because Huawei and China Unicom just announced the Ice Cream Sandwich-powered Honor will be available by Valentine’s Day. Kudos to Huawei for getting this done faster than the likes of Motorola, HTC, and Samsung. I guess this can’t be a surprise since we wrote about the ICS demo build a little over a month ago. To refresh your memory, the specs of the Honor include:

  • 4-inch (854 x 480) display
  • 1.4GHz single-core processor
  • 512MB of RAM
  • 4GB of ROM
  • 8MP rear camera
  • 2MP front-facing camera
  • microSD for up to an additional 32GB of storage
  • 1900mAh battery.

source: mobile-review
via: pocketnow

Download: Get The New Experiments Gmail Feature On Your Non 4.0.3 Device Now, Adds Local Indexing and Drag & Drop Contact Fields

by Joe Sirianni on
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As we all know, it’s been a couple of weeks now since we’ve seen the new Android 4.0.3 update hit devices like the Transformer Prime making it the first tab to receive the new firmware.  Subsequently, after the update we saw a few nice features and improvements to multiple applications and the UI itself.  However, it’s been discovered by the folks over at ComputerWorld that there’s a hidden little gem in the Gmail application.  A new Gmail feature has been discovered labeled “experiments“.  Sounds super duper secretive doesn’t it?    The experiments feature is basically just a few useful options Google engineers added for the user to try out but may not be necessarily “stable” by any means.  First up on the new experiments feature is “Enable Full Text Search” which is obvious right?  The feature allows you to perform a complete search throughout your threads for key words while indexing them nicely for you.   » Read the rest

Samsung – The Next Big Thing Is Already Here: Urban Camping & Type With Your Voice

by Roy Alugbue on
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Samsung is out to remind us about the next big thing already being here. The following installments of the awesome series highlight more of what the Galaxy S II phone can do and of course what the iPhone can’t do.

The first ad highlights the theme of Urban Camping. A casual couple arrives at a coffee shop only to be surrounded by iPhone fanatics who want to go camping. While talking, the male Galaxy S II owner reserves a camping area, right from his phone using 4G. The barista and campers in the shop are clearly not impressed and the campers proceed to proclaim they’re doing “urban camping”… right in a line as they wait for an iPhone.

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The second ad highlights a poor fellow waiting in the cold, long line for an iPhone, only to see the power of the Galaxy S II. Here, the frostbitten iPhone owner dashes into a store and needs gloves desperately. He’s greeted by a beautiful store associate who offers him the only pairs of gloves left, but the frostbitten man is concerned he is unable to use the gloves because he will not be able to text message while having them on and asks her how he will be able to text with them on. The store associate then pulls out her handy Galaxy S II and uses the impressive voice-to-text feature. She later highlights her phone is a Galaxy S II with an innocent smile. Tormented, the frostbitten iPhone owner asks the store associate about “what else the Galaxy S II can do”, in an awkward, unusual flirtation no less.

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Verizon Wireless kicks of 4X4 Galaxy Nexus Giveaway today at 10:00am

by Robert Nazarian on
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If you’re not already following @VerizonWireless on Twitter, you might want to because they’re kicking off a 4×4 Galaxy Nexus Giveaway in a little less than an hour (10:00am EST). Each day over the next 4 days, they will award a lucky winner a Galaxy Nexus.  You can see in the above image what your task is going to be for each day. You will have from 10:00am to 11:59pm to send your tweets and you’re limited to 10 tweets for each period. Winners will be picked by a random drawing and announced by January 31. Good Luck!!

[via phandroid]

Apple has tossed $100 million into the fight against HTC

by Jim Farmer on
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It’s only the first round and already Apple has reportedly burned through $100 million on its legal battle with HTC, and the fact of the matter is, here lately they have had little to show for it. Newsweek’s Dan Lyons notes Apple’s onslaught of lawsuits around the world have yielded precious little while meaningful wins have been few and far between in its ongoing legal battles against Android vendors. Apple did manage a victory last month when the International Trade Commission banned the import of several HTC smartphones it deemed to be infringing on a patent, but HTC responded the same day and said a simple workaround was already set to be rolled out. How do you like them apples? No end in sight yet however, and if it comes down to cash, Apple certainly has the resources and drive to ruin HTC. Hopefully HTC can continue to rectify their disputes quickly and simply.

[via BGR through RealDan]

Skydroid – The Windows 8 inspired launcher

by Jim Farmer on
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Custom launchers are one of those aspects that make Android so awesome. They offer a realm of customization unmatched by Android’s competitors. However, those competitors sometimes offer a unique experience of their own, that is until an Android launcher dev decides he wants that look on his device. In particular, XDA member, TheRedDrake, decided he like some of Windows’ looks and eventually created a Windows Phone 7 launcher. Despite this being well received, TheRedDrake and four other XDA members have since moved on in efforts to bring Windows 8 to Android. The team would like to qualify that in saying that their up and coming launcher is not a copy but rather inspired by the Windows 8 Metro UI. What really makes this launcher special is that the team is going above and beyond. They are implementing custom apps to go with the launcher. Upon launch they expect to have twenty and have so far posted eighteen that they have been working on. Here’s the list:

  • Dialer
  • SMS
  • Email
  • Calendar
  • People with IM and social
  • Calculator
  • Player
  • Gallery
  • Camera
  • Browser
  • Notes,
  • Stock + Currency converter
  • Meteo
  • Alarm
  • News
  • File manager
  • Settings
  • Launcher
The team says a release will come sometime in late March to early April. Until then below is the only teaser picture offered up so far (yes they didn’t post a higher resolution image). By the way, who here would like to see them change the name to Metroid?


[via XDA]

AT&T, T-Mobile Ask FCC for Approval of $1 billion Spectrum Transfer

by Stacy Bruce on
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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that AT&T and T-Mobile have filed an application with the FCC asking for their approval to transfer $1 billion worth of AT&T’s AWS spectrum over to T-Mobile. AT&T had already promised the spectrum to T-Mobile as a part of the failed $39 billion merger deal that went TU in December. “This additional spectrum will help meet the growing demand for wireless broadband services,” said Tom Sugrue, T-Mobile’s senior vice president for government affairs. We hope the FCC will move swiftly to approve the license assignments.”

Along with the AWS spectrum, AT&T also promised to pay T-mobile $3 billion in cash to make up for the botched merger attempt. T-Mobile also claims the spectrum is needed to keep up with the stiff competition from other US carriers.

Source: WSJ




Want HDR Video Recording On Your Smartphone? Sony’s New CMOS Sensors Can Make It Happen (Video)

by Joe Sirianni on
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As I’ve always said, “Damn, if this isn’t an awesome time to be in the mobile industry“.  It’s no surprise that companies like Sony and Samsung produce incredible cameras to accompany their incredible handsets since they’re no strangers to the stand alone camera.  Sony has some of the best camera sensors one is ever going to find in a majority of their handsets.  Devices like the new Sony Ericsson Xperia Ion and Sony Xperia S house a 12 megapixel Exmore CMOS sensor with the ability to capture beautiful shots in a number of different conditions.  However, the company is looking to one-up itself by announcing an even better CMOS sensor which touts “RGBW Coding” enabling the ability to capture HDR video.

» Read the rest