LG Optimus G Pro specs available, headed to North American markets

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In advance of MWC 2013, LG has officially released the specifications for their new LG Optimus G Pro smartphone on their Korean site’s newsroom. LG had previously announced the availability of the device for the South Korean market and the specs are consistent with that model. LG is stepping up to a 5.5-inch display with the device, incorporating a curved glass design capable of displaying 400 ppi full 1080p HD. Running the device will be 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor mated with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory. Besides a 3,140 mAh removable battery, the device will also accept up to a 64GB microSD card. For cameras LG has included a 13MP rear-facing camera and a 2.1MP front-facing camera that can record full HD video.

Featured Android App Review: SayIt Voice Launcher [Productivity & Tools]

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If you’re looking for something new and cool to launch apps, I have one for you. It’s called SayIt Voice Launcher, and it was developed by Rn Software. From the name of the app, you can probably tell that this involves your voice. SayIt Voice Launcher allows you to launch any app by just saying the app name, and it works flawlessly. Not only that, you don’t even have to say the exact name of the app. For example, you can say “file” for Astro File Manager. Of course you can say the full name if you want to.

There are four ways you can launch the app: the icon on your home screen, one of the widgets, the notification panel, or via a lockscreen widget that’s only compatible with Android 4.2. One of the widgets resembles the Google Now widget. You can open the voice launcher or their own custom scrollable app drawer. It organizes the apps by how often you use them so if you don’t want to use voice because you’re in a public place, you can quickly find those apps that you regularly use. The second widget is vertical. The top of it gives you access to the voice launcher and it also displays your six most used apps. Need to open a different app? No problem because it’s scrollable so you can quickly find what you’re looking for in the event that you don’t want to use your voice for whatever reason. Of the two widgets, this one is my favorite.

Plume for DashClock officially available in the Play Store now

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Plume is no doubt one hell of a Twitter client for our Android devices, but the developers have just released one hell of a widget for its users as well. Based of the DashClock Widget extension, the new widget allows for users to have yet another means to check out the date, time and of course, what is happening in that oh-so important Twitter feed and all that good stuff. The great thing about this DashClock Widget extension is that it’s completely open-sourced—- meaning there is all sorts of goodies that’s just waiting to be toyed with.

For now, the new widget extension is available for Android 4.2+ devices only, so if you’re on that version of Jelly Bean— head on down to the Play Store and grab it today— you’ll be glad you did.

 

Play Store Download Link

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Google to open official retail stores in the U.S. by the end of 2013

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Recently we reported that Google was planning to open its retail headquarters in Dublin, and it seems Google is pulling all the stops to get its products into the hands of consumers. So much so that a report has surfaced claiming Google will have its own retail stores up and running by the end of 2013 just in time for the holiday season. Our sources says that the main products that will be featured in the retail stores are Google Nexus devices, Google Chromebooks and future devices that have yet to be released. As of today, Google has several in-store kiosks, called Chrome-Stores, featured in some Best Buy locations in the U.S. and several PC World stores in the UK.

Sony Xperia Z gets put through the underwater test and passes with flying colors

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You already know that the Sony Xperia Z is going to be pretty durable thanks to its dust and waterproof casing, but some casual nonbelievers wanted to take some time and see how the device would hold up in some extreme conditions like a public pool. As you can see in the video below, the Xperia Z’s camera not only holds up well when recording video, but the quality of the video and audio is as astounding as the quality of the device itself. Of course it should be pointed out that while recording the video while being underwater was a cinch, the on-screen buttons are not functional underwater, so users will need to actually hit the record button before actually putting the smartphone through its courses underwater. Still you gotta admit that it’s pretty cool seeing Sony’s claims of the Xperia Z’s durability holding up pretty well.

Still a nonbeliever of the Xperia Z’s potential? Hit the break to check out the video for yourself.

Offline speech recognition for third-party apps discovered in Google Search update

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Developers of voice command app utter! have discovered a nice surprise included in the latest Google Search update that increases the usability of speech-recognition on Jelly Bean powered Android devices. Much of the focus since Google released the latest update has been on the new widget for Google Now. There has also been some interest in new partners and access to college basketball teams for sports cards. The change discovered by utter! may have a more far-reaching impact than those features.

With the latest update, apps from third-party developers can now access the speech-recognition dictionaries on your device. Previously, only Google’s own apps could access the dictionaries. For end users, this means the speech-recognition function can run faster and is accessible even when no data connection is available. To add the dictionaries to your device so they will be available for other apps, go to your Google Now settings, look under “Voice” and find the dictionary you want to download.

source: AndroidCentral

Is Sony testing a new device running Android 4.2 with a 1080p display?

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Sony may be testing a new device and if the latest findings are correct, it’s going to be an impressive device. With the model number C680x, Sony’s device will be running Android 4.2 and sporting a full HD screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080. Due to the model number being higher than the anticipated Xperia Z, this might be an indication of yes another Sony flagship phone. Very little details are known at this point but check back with TalkAndroid for the latest reports.

source: Xperia Blog

Google releases images and details of Glass Foundry event

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Last month Google held a Project Glass hackathon event in San Francisco and in a recent Google+ blog post, the tech giant let us in on a couple of details and a handful of images of the event. Members of the event included those who had signed up for the Glass Explorer Program at Google I/O 2012. It’s no surprise there were a lot of people that signed up after the stunning demonstration of Project Glass at the same conference. According to the post, the event was called Glass Foundry and was held over the course of two days.

HTC provides more clues about the HTC One Camera with cryptic teaser

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HTC is giving the public more to speculate over with the release of their latest cryptic picture on their Twitter page. The picture is of a camera lens that seems ordinary to the naked eye. Upon close inspection, however, the numbers “2, 19, 13” are revealed along the lens’ outside rim. These numbers ordinarily would give indications of the camera’s lens quality but these numbers happen to line up with the date of the dual press events in  New York City and London.

Sony Xperia Z to launch early in Berlin

 

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The Sony Xperia Z is scheduled to be launched as a general release at the end of February, but an announcement from Sony informs us that the phone will go on sale a little earlier than expected. The anticipated smartphone will debut at the Sony Store in Berlin, Germany on Thursday, February 21st, 2013. Those of you who want to get your hands on Sony’s newest release who do not live in Berlin or aren’t planning to travel there anytime soon, will have to wait for the general release scheduled on February 28th, 2013. Let us know if you’re going to be one of the lucky few who pick this phone up a week early.

Source: Facebook
Via: AndroidCentral

 

Featured Android App Review: Bitdefender Mobile Security & Antivirus [Tools]

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When it comes to malware and viruses regarding Android, a lot of people like to put fear in you. I am not here to do that, because I personally think it’s unlikely you will get anything serious as long as you’re dealing with the Google Play Store or Amazon Appstore. With that said, it doesn’t mean you should go without a mobile security app because they serve several purposes. Bitdefender has always been one of the leaders when it comes to PC security so it’s no surprise that they offer an Android app. It’s simply called Bitdefender Mobile Security & Antivirus and it’s has a lot of features for the money.

Ubuntu preview (finally) arriving on February 21st

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If you’re like me and a lifelong Linux user— then you were probably stoked to hear that Ubuntu was coming to Android devices soon… very soon. As exciting as the news was– many of us were on edge because we didn’t have an exact idea of when the coveted port would arrive on select Android devices. Fortunately— the Ubuntu team has officially come out and given up the details of what we have been eager to hear about: the Ubuntu preview will be available from next week, February 21st. The developers behind the Android port are making all the files which includes the full images and source code available through their internal site— giving select users a chance to dabble and fool around with the cool OS before the masses can. As exciting as this is— the port is only limited to two devices as of this time: the Galaxy Nexus and venerable Nexus 4 smartphones— so if you don’t own either phone, you’re outta luck at this time. Here’s hoping other devices will eventually get to be treated to some of that GUI Linux goodness as well sooner than later.

Hit the break to check out the full press release and try to contain yourselves in the meantime.

Gamestick console now available for $79 preorder

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Android gaming has been growing in popularity since the inception of the platform in 2008. Currently, the only drawback to Android gaming is the fact gaming is generally limited for use on Android smartphones and tablets at this time. Fortunately, a kickstarter project called the Gamestick was introduced which allows for Android gaming to be brought to your TV set via a small console and controller in one, giving Android a more traditional method of playing various Android games. Now the wait is almost over as preorder sales have finally begun, a full month ahead of their global retail launch. Preorders for the device are $79 which is amazing considering that for the same price, you can only buy a major or new released title of any current generation gaming console. Check out the press release below and let us know if you plan on buying one of the new Gamestick consoles.

eBay listing shows Nexus 7 bundle which includes earbuds and Visa gift card for $259.00

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Let’s face it— we know that there’s more than a few of you who still haven’t gotten the awesome Nexus 7 tablet— but there’s a deal out there right now that’s really itching to grab your attention. There’s a eBay listing out there from user buydig that highlights a sweet little Nexus 7 bundle which includes the powerhouse tablet, some earphones, a $30 gift card and a $30 Visa gift card— all for $259 bucks. Oh and to top it all off— buydig is even going to toss in free shipping for those of you who want to save an extra buck or two. Pretty sweet, right?

There are limited quantities of the bundle left, so interested parties will want to head on down to the source link and grab one for themselves ASAP.

source: eBay
via: Droid Life