Among the many new things that will be unveiled at next months Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, HTC Sense 4.0 is one that you may have forgotten about. If your anything like me, you don’t really care for manufacturers UI overlays, and prefer the vanilla experience as Android intended it. I have always thought the Sense UI was one of the more obtrusive UI’s and I have a fear that Sense 4.0 will ruin the lovely ICS experience that I have fallen in love with. Who knows, maybe I am worrying too much because the folks over at Pocketnow got a sneak peek at the unfinished product and say it’s a “step in the right direction.” Hopefully they weren’t just being nice.
Although PocketNow was unable to snap any pictures of the Sense 4.0 look, they were able to share some of the featured highlights and improvements. Here is what we can expect:
As it seemed that almost every week in 2011 there was an announcement for a new Android device, consumers were overwhelmed with the amount of smartphones they had to choose from. While Motorola was the first to grasp this, it appears that other companies are starting to follow suit. HTC has announced that they will be pushing out less phones this year, and pushing out “hero” quality phones. The HTC UK chief Phil Roberson told Mobile Magazine that the manufacturer is going back a strategy that involves releasing a limited amount of high-spec devices this year but will have a focus on second quarter releases. As he put it:
“We have to get back to focusing on what made us great – amazing hardware and a great customer experience. We ended 2011 with far more products than we started out with. We tried to do too much.”
We all have opinions to give or questions waiting to ask. Perhaps you’re afraid your opinion is bold and you’re afraid you may hurt a feeling or two. Or maybe you want to ask a specific question, but you’re afraid of folks thinking you’re stupid. Well the Thumb app aims to let users throw in their 2 cents or ask those million dollar questions, naturally in anonymous fashion of course. Created by developer Opinionaided, the app allows you to:
- Vote and comment on questions
- Responses come in just seconds after you post your question
- Choose your audience: post questions to everyone on Thumb, select a gender, or just send to your Friends
- Respond to questions in a specific category
- Connect with people who share similar interests
- Reward people by giving them Stars for helpful responses
While the app is cool, it does lose its charm and novelty after a while. Nevertheless it’s worth it for Android users to give it a shot– especially considering you will be able to finally channel your inner jerk or ask if you should get that 1985 Honda Accord… all without hassle. You can find the app out over in the Android Market or by scanning the QR code below.
Add this to the list of LTE phones with possible global capabilities. It appears that the HTC Rezound has global radios that work without an unlock code. It was found by a UK user who ordered the phone over the holidays hoping that they could get it to work on T-Mobile. After placing a SIM card in the device and changing the network settings to “WCDMA Only” he had a working connection with data.
Now, Both HTC and Verizon claim that this Beats phone doesn’t have global capabilities but if you delve into this few week old thread that is the source, you’ll find that more and more people are discovering that it does. So if you are in the market for a phone that is usable overseas, then I certainly recommend this phone with it’s decent price of $199.99. Given its unlockable bootloader, I am sure that ROMs for the Rezound will certainly take advantage of it. Enjoy!
If you’re in the market for the Galaxy Nexus, and you’re able to open a new account with Verizon, then head over to Amazon Wireless because you can grab one for a mere $99.00 with a 2-year contract. That’s an incredible price for the most coveted phone in the land. If you’re doing an upgrade the price shoots up to $259.99. A big difference, but still better than Verizon’s price of $299.99.
[via amazon wireless]
The Taiwanese company Acer, is enticing many a tablet buyer with Iconia Tab A700‘s impressive specs. Breaking back in November, the 1920×1200, 1080p displayed 1.3GHz Tegra 3 tablet is certainly turning heads. However, there wasn’t a word on how much this tablet would be going for. Well, that changes as the German web site Tablet Test has listed the A700 for €549 for the 16GB model and €749 for the 64GB model or £460 ($720) and £630 ($982) in the UK respectively.
While this may be a bit pricy the specs are certainly worth it. Acer is looking to push past its lackluster sales performance with the A500 and is looking to throw its weight around with the best of them with the A700. Only time will tell, and we will have to wait and see when we see it’s release in quarter two of this year.
Updated with winner below
It’s time for another Talk Android contest. This time HTC is providing two phones, the HTC Wildfire S and the HTC Status. The winner will get their choice of which one they want.
The HTC Wildfire S is currently offered on T-Mobile and features a 3.2-inch display and a 5MP camera. Recently, it was added to the bootloader unlock support by HTC. The Status is available on AT&T and is geared towards the hardcore Facebook fan. It features a QWERTY keyboard for all your status updates, and features a 2.6-inch display, a 5MP camera, a VGA front facing camera, and an extra special Facebook button.
The rules are simple:
In 2010 the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) added an exemption that made modifying copyrighted software legal for the purposes of unlocking phones. At the time, this was targeted at protecting iPhone owners from Apple who was trying to establish a legal precedent for suing its own customers. In any case, the exemption applies to any cell phone, including all Android phones sold in the United States. However, it wasn’t made to last. In fact it’s set to expire later this year. Surely we can’t stand idly by.
Leading the charge is the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). They’re petitioning the Copyright Office to make the exemption permanent, while at the same time suggesting an expansion of the definition to “personal computing devices”, so as to include tablets, game consoles, & even PCs. They’re petition is available online and they are collecting signatures as well as personal commentary concerning why you support extending and amending the exemption. If you’re willing to help the cause, make sure you do so by February 10th.
Wait isn’t this about jailbreaking? Isn’t that an iOS thing? So how does this affect Android?
Well, Logitech has announced its Q3 earnings for the 2012 fiscal year and it’s sort of what we expected, there’s not much going on. However, in the midst of dropping out of the Google TV business for the utter failure of the product, the company has confirmed they’ve completely sold out of all their new units. So, sorry folks, no more $99 units floating around. And if you were one of the folks who purchased the device at full price, ouch in advance. However, do keep in mind that Vizio has promised to bring us a second gen unit for the same low price. So hang in there if you’ve been looking for the right moment to hop on the Google TV train. Feel free to leave a comment or two below.
The HTC Rezound is a power house of a phone that was released in late 2011 and is currently going for $199.99. Given that the Galaxy Nexus was taking much of the news at that point of being released it kind of went along with not a lot of attention. Well Verizon is showing it some love by getting ready to push an update that appears to have some cosmetic changes as well as some bug fixes. It also pushes the software version to 2.01.605.11 with a baseboard version 0.95.00.1118r. Here is what the update entails:
- Updated signal strength meter to 5 bar Received Signal Strength Indication (RSSI).
- Screen Timeout issues while connected to Wifi have been resolved.
- Resolved issue with Mobile Hotspot data stalling while multiple users are connected.
- Improved audio quality during voice call.
- Reduced forced closures related to the People application.
- Improved device stability reduces continuous resets.
- Resolved issue with Task Manager stopping Mail background service.
So while it’s not the Ice Cream Sandwich
update that was leaked
roughly ten days ago it should improve the overall experience of your device. Even with the ability to unlock
the bootloader and ROMs
that are starting to pop up those who shy away from that stuff can rest better at night knowing that their device will be becoming more stable. Stay tuned and we’ll keep you updated when it does.