HTC might have made the best phone of last year (and this year), but their results are from manufacturer of the year. When it comes to smartphones, Apple and Samsung clearly dominate. Companies like LG, HTC, Sony, and Motorola are just sitting at the bottom of the barrel hoping to catch fire.
HTC’s 2013 smartphone market share wasn’t even 5 percent, but they have big plans for 2014. CEO Peter Chou has set a goal of reaching 8-10 percent of the market. It doesn’t seem like much, but that certainly won’t be any easy task.
Furthermore, HTC chairwoman Cher Wang feels they will return to profitability by the 2nd quarter of this year. Better smartphones sales will help achieve that, but they also confirmed they are planning on launching a tablet as well as a wearable device, most likely a smartwatch.
Verizon is already offering a buy-one-get-one-free deal on the new HTC One (M8) and on top of that, you can get up to a 30% discount on the price of the HTC One (M8) you’re paying for.
Of course, this can be combined with the BOGO deal which Verizon is offering, but you’ll have to sign a 2 year contract. To get the 30% discount, you’ll have to enter the discount code VERIZON30 at checkout. This means that with the BOGO deal, you can get two HTC One (M8) handsets for just $139.99 on contract. Read more
In a very smart move, Google is mandating that Android manufacturers use “Powered by Android” branding on their devices. The HTC One (M8) and Samsung Galaxy S 5 are the first devices to do this. This “Powered by Android” branding will appear during the boot sequence in both phones, and we suspect all future Android phones. At least the ones that use Google Play Services.
I’m surprised Google didn’t mandate this from the very beginning. If you think about it, with all the manufacturer custom UIs such as TouchWiz and Sense, mainstream consumers have no idea that their own phone is running Android. Most people probably think these manufacturers are using their own proprietary software much like Apple is with iOS. Well in a way, they are, but at least they will know there are other options out there, even though the experience might not be identical.
Amazon’s entry into the video box market has been long rumored, but it seems their plans will come into fruition next week. The company has invited reporters, with the above promo image, to gather for an “update on our video business” hosted by Amazon VP Peter Larsen in New York next Wednesday, April 2.
This is probably going to be a box to compete with products like Apple TV, Roku, and of course, Google’s Chromecast. They already have a video streaming service, Amazon Prime, that competes with other similar services. Our questions about the device will be answered next Wednesday, so stay tuned.
When HTC announced the HTC One (M8) earlier this week, the only colors available initially were Gunmetal Gray, Amber Gold and Glacial Silver. There are many buyers of smartphones who look for devices with a little more pop and want other colors. HTC seems to be preparing to respond to these demands with at least two new colors – Stealth Red and Stealth Black. These colors were discovered after users performed some searches on Google and discovered ads for these variants showing up at the top of the search results.
In conjunction with MWC 2014, LG announced their take on a “mini” version of their flagship device, the LG G2. While some consumers continue to hope manufacturers will decide to release devices on par from a hardware standpoint with flagship devices, just in a smaller form factor, the manufacturers seem to think scaling things down includes the specs. LG is no exception as the smaller form factor for the LG G2 mini also comes with scaled down hardware. The goal, as revealed by LG’s Dr. Jong-seok Park, is to make a device that is “a very attractive option for mid-tier markets” by keeping costs down with less expensive, less powerful components.
Since releasing the HTC One (M8) the company has been on a bit of roll with releasing core services to Google Play. They have already announced the availability of BlinkFeed and Zoe in Google Play now or coming up soon. The big question for many is what other devices, even from other manufacturers, will HTC make these apps available to run on. One app that probably won’t have any application outside of HTC devices is the software powering the Dot View cases introduced this week. Nevertheless, HTC is now making HTC Dot View available for install through Google Play. Read more
Having already conquered the smartphone market, Samsung has their eyes on the tablet market. The first step towards this was the release of the Galaxy TabPRO line, which consists of 3 different sizes: 8.4-inch, 10.1-inch, and 12.2-inch. Although they pack a lot of power and options, the emphasis is on the display resolution, which is among the best out there. Of course, as one would guess, that extraordinary display comes at a higher cost. The 8.4-inch version goes for $399. Comparing that to the iPad Mini, it’s on par, but comparing it to other Android tablets, it’s quite a premium. The TabPRO 10.1 costs $499, which again is pretty high when compared to other 10-inch Android tablets. Is is really worth the extra dough? Hit the break to get started.
The popular fitness app Runtastic has reached 70 million downloads and in celebrating that feat, the team behind the app is announcing a few new features for it. First, users will notice that the app features a completely revamped design. Runtastic 5.0 features a cleaner look while offering a better user experience.
Another feature of the app is a new hydration feature. This feature gives users a personal recommendation of re-hydrating themselves after their workout. It’s takes local weather conditions, activity levels, and personal stats and recommends the hydration intake needed post workout.
Lastly, the developers behind the app have taken some of the feature of the pro version of the app, like the music player and live tracking and cheering, and moved them to the free version of the app.
We have the presser, QR code and download link after the the break. We also have the intro video for you as well. Enjoy!
It would seem that now is the time for the smart bulb. Just four days ago, LG announced its own line of smart bulbs. Today, it’s Samsung’s turn. Unlike the LG line, Samsung’s bulbs will not come with WiFi and will only feature Bluetooth.