Google’s Eric Schmidt acknowledges the “Apple vs Android” battle while leaving Microsoft out

In a recent interview, Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt clearly identifies Android and iOS as the only two top competitors when it comes to the mobile market and even calls it as the industries “defining contest.” With a small jab, Schmidt also claims that Google and Android are currently winning the battle and points out that there are four times more Android phones than iPhones and with 1.3 million activation’s per day, the company should reach a billion total by the end of this year. Quite mind boggling don’t you think? Especially for the early adopters as myself that were there since the beginning of this wonderful OS. Eric also couldn’t help but take another jab at Apple with their decision to go away with Google Maps and replace it with the far less superior iOS Maps. Eric was stated saying that Apple is now discovering that “maps are really hard,” opining that “Apple should have kept our maps… They’re better.”

Schmidt also pointed something out that I think Apple clearly needs to realize. While Schmidt likes to see Android on top, he admits that this intensifying rivalry between the two platforms does nothing but benefit the consumers at the end of the day.

In an interesting take, Schmidt also stated what he thinks are currently the top 4 companies in what he calls the “gang of four.” He states that Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and Google are the top 4 companies at the moment because they are all different and are all “making enormous investments.” When questioned as to why Microsoft wasn’t on the list, Schmidt said it was “intentional” because Microsoft has not brought any “state-of-the-art products” to the market as of late.

What do you guys think about Schmidt’s top 4 company list? I’d also suggest we take some time to reflect on the fact that Android is nearing its 1 billionth activation! I think it’s quite an impressive feat in such a short amount of time. So with this, I’d like to hear your guys’ Android story. How did you get into Android and when? Also, what Android device made you fall in love with the OS? It may or may not be the first Android device you owned. Let us know in the comments!

source: The Verge

Shadowgun: DeadZone online game now available as public beta, Tegra 3 devices only

Good news for those gamers that want to get their 3rd person, multiplayer frag on: Shadowgun Deadzone just released as an open public beta. This game was previously only available as a private beta.  The only catch; you need to be rocking a Tegra 3 device. Madfinger, the game’s developer, is inviting everyone to help make their game better with this beta. They do throw the typical beta disclaimers out there such as missing features and content. Additionally, they want to remind all that they are operating on a limited number of servers at the moment and to be patient when trying to fire up a game. Some highlights of the beta are four playable characters, two maps, two game modes, and seven weapons including an interesting name for a rocket launcher. There are also a multitude of “gadgets” to aid in your frag. Give it a go and let us know how it is.

Play Store Link  

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32GB Nexus 7 appears on yet another retail site

By now, the 32GB Nexus 7 shouldn’t be a huge surprise. However, the more retail sites that we see this nice little device show up on the better. This time the device is popping up as a registration page on the Spanish version of UK the based Carphone Warehouse called Phone House. All signs are definitely pointing toward the 32GB version of the hot Nexus 7 making its way around the globe. What’s a little bit of a mystery is the price. Some think the 32GB version will replace the 16GB one in price, but the price shown in the picture is 30 Euros higher than the 16GB version. This is at least the third different price that we’ve come across. Hopefully we’ll find out soon enough. Or you could get lucky and order the 16GB version and Google will send you a 32GB model like that one guy. 

source:  Phone House

Samsung Officially Reveals the Mid-Range Galaxy S III Mini

We gave you a heads up yesterday that today would be the day Samsung reveals the Samsung Galaxy S III mini. Sure enough, the supposed mini version of Samsung’s flagship device is now official with Samsung making the announcement today in Germany. As a refresher from yesterday’s leak, the specs are now official for the pint-sized device. We’ll be looking at a 4-inch 800×480 Super AMOLED display, 5MP camera, 1GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and will run on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

Like some of you (based on yesterday’s comments), I’m guilty of setting my expectations too high initially for this device. When I first heard the name, I instantly assumed somewhere in the neighborhood of the Galaxy S III innards, only in a smaller package. I falsely assumed Samsung wanted to capture that market that isn’t crazy about the larger displays. However, it looks like all they’re doing is releasing a Galaxy device to compete in the mid-range market. I guess I can’t really blame them after all. I just wish they would’ve come up with a different name. Let’s face it; the only thing this device has in common with the Galaxy S III is the design and that “inspired by nature” moniker. There’s no word yet on pricing or an LTE version but keep checking here for details. Hit the break for the full press release.
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Samsung Galaxy Nexus injunction reversed by appeals court

Do you remember all the patches and workarounds that Samsung and Google had to push out to consumers last summer to remove unified search from Android devices, specifically the Samsung Galaxy Nexus? That work was due to an injunction awarded by Judge Lucy Koh to halt sales of the Galaxy Nexus which was the subject of a patent lawsuit Apple filed against Samsung. In granting the injunction halting sales, Koh determined Apple could suffer irreparable damage and loss of market share unless sales of the Galaxy Nexus were halted as long as they included a universal search function.
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Verizon sets release date for DROID RAZR HD and DROID RAZR MAXX HD as October 18

We heard they could be delayed, but it looks like everything is a go because Verizon just announced the DROID RAZR HD and the DROID RAZR HD MAXX will hit stores next Thursday, October 18. The DROID RAZR HD will cost $199 and the DROID RAZR HD MAXX will run you $299. The main difference between the two phones is the DROID RAZR MAXX HD sports the same 3300mAh battery that was in the DROID RAZR MAXX. It also makes it a little thicker; 9.3mm vs 8.4mm. The DROID RAZD HD is no slouch either with its 2530mAh battery so I’m thinking that at $199, it’s a really good buy. The only other difference is storage; The DROID RAZR HD has 16GB and the RAZR HD MAXX has 32GB.

The rest of the specs for both models include a 4.7-inch Super AMOLED HD display, 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, 1GB of RAM, 8MP camera, microSD for expanded storage, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, and WiFi – 802.11a/b/g/n (2.4GHz/5GHz). The only real negative is Ice Cream Sandwich is onboard, but Motorola promises Jelly Bean by the end of the year. The DROID RAZR HD will be offered in black or white and the RAZR MAXX HD will be offered in black only.

Check out our hands on video from the launch event.

source: verizon

Google releases new Zagat app to help diners find good eats

Restaurant ratings guide Zagat has a new app available in the Google Play Store. Now owned by Google, the new Zagat app has been completely rebuilt from the ground up. Users can search for nearby restaurants based on different criteria like ratings, cuisine or other features. In some cases, users can even make reservations at participating restaurants. The selection is limited to U.S. cities, with Zagat claiming to have 30,000 establishments in the database. Also of note, the Zagat app uses Google+ for sign-in purposes, which you may want to do to submit your own restaurant reviews and ratings.

If you are interested in giving it a try, use one of the download links below. Be sure to check back in and let us know how the meal was and whether the reviews were accurate.

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Japan’s NTT DoCoMo announces 2012 Winter Collection, includes several high-end devices

NTT DoCoMo, the large network operator in Japan, has released the line-up of devices that will be included in their 2012 Winter Collection. The list includes several high-end devices like the Samsung Galaxy S III in Titanium Gray, a red LG Optimus G model, a Samsung Galaxy Note II, the Sony Xperia AX, a Sharp AQUOS ZETA smartphone, and a Fujitsu Arrows Tab 10.1-inch device.

The AQUOS ZETA phone sports a 4.9-inch IGZO display running atop a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro chip with 2GB of RAM. Running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, the device is water and dust proofed and will be available in red, white or blue models. Another device readers may not be familiar with is a 10.1-inch tablet from Fujitsu. The Arrows Tab is running an NVIDIA Tegra 3 1.7GHz quad-core processor with 2GB of RAM to drive a full HD 1920×1200 WUXGA display. Running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, the device packs a huge 10,080 mAh battery.

source: PocketDroid

Samsung confirms October 24 event will be to unveil the US Galaxy Note II



October 24 has long been speculated as the day Samsung would show off the US version of the Galaxy Note II. We can now stop the speculation as Samsung made the October 24th launch date official. The Galaxy Note II World Tour will be stopping in New York City on October 24, where there will likely be a press event to announce the price and official release date. We know the Galaxy Note II will be released on T-Mobile, but it will be interesting to see if Samsung has any surprises up their sleeves for the US consumers. After the press conference there will be a “consumer celebration” to let the public in on the activities. Who is excited to finally get their hands on the Galaxy Note II?

Source: Engadget