Size Matters: Who Wants a Phablet?

When mobile phones first became ubiquitous, the best phones were the smaller ones. Every new model got smaller and smaller and would sell better than the bigger, clunkier models. Then, in 2007, Apple introduced the iPhone…a phone that was all touch screen and was meant to be looked at as much as be held to one’s ear. Suddenly, the tiny phones of the past seemed severely inferior, and the shrinking trend halted and began to reverse.

Product Identity
Fast forward a few years and the trend continues. The proliferation of Android devices flooded the market with devices of varying shapes and sizes. From the iPhone-esque 3.2″ HTC Hero, to the beefy 10.1″ Xoom tablets, Android ran the gamut of sizes. When Dell came out with the 5″ Dell Streak, people didn’t know whether it was a large phone or a small tablet. The common belief of why it ultimately failed was exactly that…product identity.

Samsung has done well with its 5.3″ Galaxy Note overseas, and is about to make a splash with it stateside. But shouldn’t it succumb to the same fate as the Dell Streak since it’s nearly the same weird size? I don’t think so, and here’s why:


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LightSquared Requesting the FCC Require Stricter GPS Device Standards

LightSquared, the company which has spent billions of dollars developing a whole-sale only wireless broadband network, filed a document with the FCC regarding stricter standards of GPS devices. LightSquared believes that signals that are used as part of GPS bands are the culprit of interference on the spectrum that they’ve chose to use for their services. Originally, that spectrum was supposed to be a satellite-only type of deal, but the FCC cleared it for terrestrial use back in 2005. The FCC also granted the company a waiver so LightSquared could run a terrestrial-only network.

Now, due to Sprint delivering an ultimatum, LightSquared is pressed for time in achieving a resolution for all these interference issues. Losing a long-term multi-billion dollar deal like the one struck with Sprint could be potentially catastrophic for LightSquared, especially when you couple it with LightSquared’s largest investor, Harbinger Capital Partners, who last year reported a whopping 46.6 percent value loss. Although the potential of LightSquared can be valued quite high in my opinion, it seems that if it can’t strike a deal with the FCC, we might be seeing a little more sinking than swimming.

Source: CNET

Seesmic App Receives update, Includes Bug Fixes and Drops Google Buzz support

For those of you heavy Twitter and Faceboook users, I am pretty sure you have heard of Seesmic, the app that allows you to post to multiple social networks at one time. While Seesmic is a great outlet for your accomplishing your social networking needs, it’s been a really long time since it has seen an update. Today, the app finally received an update that the developer describes as follows:

This version addresses various bug fixes and minor updates including:

  • Updates to address issues with Trending Topics
  • Support for t.co links
  • Bug fixes based on feedback
  • Dropped Google Buzz support

As you can see, not much has changed. Regardless, though, it’s always nice to know that the developer is going to continue with maintenance and support. If you have yet to receive the update or want to give Seesmic a try, hit up one of the links below. They must be doing something right because the app has maintained a 4 1/2 star rating out of over 120, 000 reviews.

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Android Market

MotoActv update coming March 7th – Supports more sports and other capabilities

MotoActv owners can look forward to an update on March 7th that will bring over 40 new activities to the little unit including yoga, pilates, dancing, and martial arts. Moto has also went ahead and tweaked the functionality of the MotoActv in this update. For instance, you’ll be able to activate the display with a flick of the wrist and they moved WiFi setup onto the device itself. No more messing with the phone if you don’t want to. The last thing they mentioned in their official blog post related to the MotoActv Training Portal. Specifically, the update will allow you to hold competitions against others using the service, almost Xbox Live style.

That seems like a pretty hefty update, and yet, Moto teases, “and this is just a sneak peak – look out for more details of further new additions.”

We’re looking forward to seeing what all is in store when the update drops worldwide, March 7.

source: Motorola

Microsoft Office One Note Arrives on Android

Not one to let today’s Google Chrome launch steal the show, Microsoft just pushed One Note to the Android Market. For those of you who don’t know. One Note has been a part of of Microsoft’s Office PC suite since 2010 and has been the program of choice for many needing to take detailed and comprehensive notes. For those folk, the announcement is well received I’m sure. The One-Note app syncs up with your computer and provides on the go capability to take notes with pictures, bullets, and to-do lists. The app only allows 500 notes at a time but I’m sure for most that’s more than enough. Just download the app, sign in with your Microsoft Live ID  and get synced up with your PC.

Android Market

via: AndroidCentral 

Gingerbread Update For AT&T Samsung Infuse 4G On Hold

If you own an Infuse 4G, you’ll be disappointed to hear that Samsung and AT&T have put the upcoming update to Gingerbread on hold. It seems that there’s an issue that targets a small number of users and they’re currently working on a fix. Surely the teams at Samsung and AT&T will be able to get this update around to Infuse 4G users sooner rather than later.

Source: Samsung
Via: Android Central

Review: Google Chrome is Extremely Polished For a Beta [Video]

Even though this app was only released a few hours ago and we have had to wait about four months since it was announced, I have had an opportunity to play with it for a bit and I have to say for a Beta app, I am thoroughly impressed. Chrome has long since been my favorite browser of choice on my laptop and has also been one of the most requested features for Android ever.

Well if you haven’t heard Chrome has been released but only for those totting Ice Cream Sandwich. It does work on roms and my buddy who owns a Rezound has tested it on RezRom ICS 1.2. I assume it works on CleanROM as well. So yes those of you with Ice Cream Sandwich roms can rest easily knowing that it works on your devices. Those of you without ICS worry not as I assume a kind developer will be able to tinker with the program and make it run on any device out there. All it takes is time.  
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Adobe Flash Player Not Coming To Chrome for Android, Ever

With the announcement of Google Chrome for Android earlier today – to a resounding cheer of the Android community – Adobe has stepped in to (indirectly, of course) take a little of that excitement away. Standing by their previous announcement, the Adobe Air and Flash team released a statement on their blog stating that they have no intention of developing a flash plugin for the new Chrome for Android browser. Disappointing? You bet.

However I don’t think this signifies anything more than the necessity to inconvenience yourself with switching browsers for Flash content. With HTML 5 dominance and standardization on the horizon, mobile users will soon be forgetting about the Flash Player days anyway. I do believe that this is a pretty premature move though, since Flash content is all over the web and Adobe has yet to release any HTML 5 alternative for viewing it (though they do note that Adobe AIR will be bringing this in the near future). The full statement follows after the break.


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Telus Launches Optik TV App for Streaming TV and Movies on the Go

Good news for you Canadian readers who have Telus as their wireless carrier. Telus has just released an app in the Android Market that works in conjunction with thier Optik TV service and allows users the ability to watch select content on their mobile devices. Channel selection is a bit limited at this time but currently you can tune in to HBO, YTV, Baby TV, two Disney stations, and a few more. Whats neat is that the service doesn’t end with mobile devices either, Telus also offers an online portal for any web-enabled device. You can even watch Optik TV with your Xbox Kinect, gestures and voice included.

Once Telus’ LTE service kicks off, you can bet this app will be a hoot. Imagine watching your favorite HBO shows on the go without the streaming lag-time associated with 3G service. I imagine LTE should hit Telus soon, more than likely alongside the Galaxy Note launch in the middle February.

If you’re a Telus customer and want to go get the download, I’ve included a couple handy links after the break. While you’re there, you might as well check out the promo video for the Optik TV app, too!


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CM9 Developers Give Update On Progress Of ROM

Let’s face it, we love our CM9 ROMs and want to keep abreast of the latest news regarding any developments or updates, right? That’s why the developers of the great ROM wanted to give the masses a status and progress update on where the ROM stands and its future. Among the items highlighted is how much Android 4.0 has changed from previous platforms and the various changes requires updated graphics drivers. The relevance of the need for updated graphics drivers is that the drivers are almost always closed-source… meaning they don’t appear until a device or devkit is released with them. They’ve been able to make some workarounds, but are blocked on some subsystems like the camera.

Moreover, the developers decided to start off with a fresh codebase from Google and are forward-porting features from CM7, keying in on design and better integration by cleaning house on some unnecessary features. For starters, they’ve thrown out the CMParts app, instead electing to add the developer’s custom features directly into the main settings. In addition, the developers realized CM7 had many options that weren’t used, so they’re now taking a “just works” approach— meaning it should achieve a good balance between tweakability and a great out-of-the-box experience.

Of course many of you all are thinking “that’s great, but is my device supported??” Here’s the developers response to that:

“Currently, you can compile CM9 for a small number of devices- notably the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Wi-Fi and T-Mobile versions), the HP Touchpad and Motorola Xoom. The next devices to show up will likely be a whole array of Samsung phones (Exynos chipset), with devices based on the Qualcomm MSM8660 and 7×30 chipsets to follow. It’s still unclear if we can provide support for the QSD8x50 family of devices (Nexus One, HTC Evo, etc), but the answer almost always turns out to be “yes” for these kinds of things.”

There you have it folks, the status and progress of the CM9 ROM.

source: CM Blog