We already know that Sprint & Clearwire has quite the relationship, but Sprint fully intends from not just owning some of Clearwire, but it wants to acquire what’s left of the available Clearwire share. Reuters reports that Sprint (by way of Softbank) wants full control of Clearwire’s network and subsequent spectrum by making a full $2.1 billion offer. If the deal is approved (and all indications point to its approval), the entire value of Clearwire would be worth somewhere in the area of $4.2 billion— though we won’t see the deal formally approved until at least sometime in the March or April of the upcoming year.
Talk about Sprint wanting to put a ring on it. Sheesh.We’ll be on the lookout for any further developments on this big news.
It looks like Shazam and SoundHound are going to have a little more competition from Google. Google’s Sound Search widget was recently only (officially) available to devices running stock Jelly Bean, which is a pretty narrow slice of devices in the Android ecosystem. It couldn’t really gain much traction against established apps like SoundHound or Shazam because it simply couldn’t get on enough devices. Google fortunately realized this, and today made the Sound Search app available in the Play Store for any device running 4.0 and above.
The Sound Search has a leg up on its competition because it links you to music directly in the Play Store, since it’s all Google-maintained. It also features search history syncing across devices, so you can identify the song when you’re out and then actually download it at home on your tablet. Not bad, right? Hit the break for the download link if you’re interested.
The virtual tour guide known as Field Trip has been updated to allow users to save location cards as the app helps discover what Google calls “the cool, hidden, and unique.” The update includes a few bug fixes and battery consumption tweaks but it’s the card save feature that represents the biggest improvement. Users can save a card to read at a more convenient time, add it to the list of favorite locations or flag bad information. Hey, I think I know another near-magical Google product that uses cards. Might we some day see Field Trip rolled into Google Now? Update now or hit the download link below if you’ve yet to give Field Trip a go!
I’d say most, if not all, of our readers might have used Google to search for something in 2012 once or twice. Just a few times. Or probably thousands of times. Google performed over 1.2 trillion web searches in 146 languages, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Google’s got a finger on the pulse of the internet. And with the information from those 1.2 trillion web searches, Google summed up 2012 in a 2 minute video. And in typical Google fashion, there’s a handful of easter eggs in the video. Hit the break for the video and the link Google’s own page for Zeitgeist 2012.
Republic Wireless announced today that they have begun shipping pre-ordered smartphones for their new wireless service. Republic Wireless is using a “Hybrid Wi-Fi cellular Calling network” to provide service. The network utilizes any available wifi for a primary network and Sprint’s 3G network for the secondary network. According to Republic Wireless CEO David Morken, the service will “invert the status quo” by relying on cheap, plentiful wifi and only reverting to more costly, limited cellular when wifi is not available. This approach helps keep the cost down which enables Republic Wireless to offer a monthly service for only $19 that includes unlimited talk, text, and data. Republic Wireless is currently shipping the Motorola DEFY XT for $249 plus a $10 startup fee. The service is pay-as-you-go, so no long term contract locks customers in to the service.
Hit the break to see a video announcement from Republic Wireless and to read the full press release.
With LG’s Nexus 4, Samsung’s Galaxy S III and Note 2 receiving all of the news lately of their great sales, it’s good to see HTC get some of the spotlight for once. It seems as if their Asia only Android device (Droid DNA in the US) in the Butterfly has been selling quite well and is prompting HTC to increase their shipments of the device.
According to Jack Tong, the president of HTC’s North Asia said “We will ship a large number of devices by the end of this month, due to the success of the HTC Butterfly J in Japan.”
The Butterfly sports a beautiful 5″ 1080p display paired with Quolcomm’s new quad-core S4 pro processor. If you’re curious about HTC’s new successful device, you can check out our review of Verizon’s Droid DNA right here!
Sony has released their Motiongraph application that allows users to create photos that essentially “move.” You shoot a short 2 second video and use various images from the videos you record to create your own gifs. Pretty nifty, don’t you think?
The video below showcases the new app and how you can use it. The app is available in the Google Play Store for $0.99!
Google has rolled out an update to its Currents application today, allowing users to easily scan various categories, publications and breaking news. The minor upgrade may not seem a like a huge deal, but the new navigation metric will give users the ability to browse through the latest and most popular headlines without delving into a specific article or publication.
A new array of categories has also been added, meaning readers can now view articles based on subject matter like Entertainment, Sports and Lifestyle. Additionally, stories from specific publications can now be navigated by swiping vertically–something that will come as a welcomed addition for those who previously used Currents. You can find the full list of changes at the source link below.
It looks like that 67-page letter that Dish Network sent to the FCC regarding using its own AWS-4 spectrum for land-based broadband was all worth it. Today the FCC approved said use of the spectrum after previously being blocked by regulatory barriers. What’s next for Dish? According to them, they “will consider its strategic options.” That wouldn’t have anything to do with that little Google/Dish wireless service rumor from last month would it? This should prove to be interesting once we get into 2013.
Do you fancy the new minimalistic look of Android’s Jelly Bean clock app, but are afraid to root and hack your device just to get it? Well, good news for you: a developer in the Play Store has just released Android’s shiny new clock app for all devices running Android 2.2 and up. It’s called Clock JB+ and costs $0.99 which gets you all the features of Google’s new alarm layout, timer, stopwatch, world clock, plus some new customization options. Jump past the break to see screen shots and a QR code or download link.
Recently there have been rumblings of Sony releasing some hefty Android juggernauts in the coming year of 2013. Codename’s of Sony’s Yuga/Odin have been flying around lately and is expected to be one hell of a device. With Sony recently taking HTC’s #2 spot and only behind Samsung when it comes to Androids top manufacturers, I’m sure they’re preparing for a big push this next year to challenge that top spot.
The leaks are pointing towards 5+” full HD displays paired with a quad-core Cortex-A15 processors along with 13 MP Exmor RS cameras on the back. Here’s what the Sony tipster had to say:
While Google Now has only been available for Jelly Bean devices (officially), that hasn’t stopped people from finding numerous ways to get it onto their Ice Cream Sandwich devices. Google Now has been available for Ice Cream Sandwich devices for some time now thanks to the folks at XDA. Back then you just needed to have a rooted device and being able to sideload an .apk file and changing some things in your build.prop.
Now there’s a newer method that utilizes an application called GNow Handlebars. Your ICS device still has to be rooted, and all you have to do is install the application and follow the simple steps:
A couple of days ago we told you about AndyTags NFC Stickers. If you already own an Android phone with NFC, and you haven’t gotten into NFC stickers or tags yet, then you’re missing out on a lot of fun. Speaking of fun, the folks over at AndyTags were gracious enough to hit us up with 5 combo packs to give to our awesome readers.
We are going to keep this contest simple. All you have to do is head over to our forum post and reply to it with what you want most this Holiday season. You have until Friday, December 14 at 11:59pm EST to enter. On Saturday, December 15, we will pick five random winners and announce them. Each pack is a little different so we are going to reward them in the following order:
5-pack multi-color & 5-pack ICS Blue
Combo pack – 8 regular, 2 anti-metal
Combo pack – 8 regular, 2 anti-metal
**Note: Only Mifare Classic stickers are included in these packs, which won’t be fully compatible with the Nexus 4 or Nexus 10. AndyTags does offer stickers that are more suited for those devices, so check their site for more information.
Last week, Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto: Vice City was pulled from the Play Store after a short stint due to validation issues. I’m happy to report that the game is now back on the Play Store for you all to enjoy.
Vice City has been one of my favorite iterations of GTA and I’m sure it will run great on a high end Android device. Any GTA fans out there planning on grabbing this now that it’s back? GTA: Vice City will run you back a decent $4.99, links will be provided after the break!
Well this is new. Instead of Motorola’s usual Apple-bashing ads, it looks like they’re going after Android’s top dog; Samsung’s Galaxy S III. It launched this morning on Moto’s Facebook page with a punny tagline about downloading from another galaxy, and links to a little slideshow on Motorola’s website slamming comparing the S III to their own Droid RAZR HD. The RAZR HD features a battery with 20% more juice than what the S3 offers, as well as Kevlar backing, which also happens to be splash resistant. They take a low shot here at Samsung’s plastic backing, but all’s fair in vicious viral advertising, right?
The last side shows off how much better designed and innovative the hardware is on the RAZR HD by giving you a side-by-side look at both phones. My only problem with this is that the side shot of the S III looks like a low-res image off the 32nd page on a Google search. It’s a bit unfair, but the RAZR HD does have a very nicely designed body.
Since Apple isn’t controlling the market anymore, I guess we should all expect the Android OEMs to turn on each other for their marketing tactics. But, hey, competition is never a bad thing.