AT&T Announces $14 Billion Network Expansion

AT&T announced it will invest $14 billion to expand its wireless and wireline broadband networks. AT&T cited anticipated expansion of IP data growth and new services. The wireless giant plans to expand its 4G LTE network to cover 300 million people by the end of 2014. It had previously planned to cover 250 million LTE customers by the end of 2013. Hopefully customers will not see any new mystery charges to cover this expenditure.

The huge financial investment is great news for those waiting for LTE coverage but it’s the company’s wireline broadband services that will see the biggest expansion. AT&T expects to increase its wired IP broadband network to cover 75% of its customer locations. It will also increase fiber deployment to an additional million business customers.

Hit the source for a detailed breakdown of the planned investment.

Source: AT&T

Samsung Galaxy S III Becomes Top-Selling Phone Of Q3 2012

 

This year has been very good for Samsung, but Q3 has been a very good period of time especially as Samsung as it can proudly proclaim it offered the top smartphone of Q3 2012. According to Strategy Analytics, Samsung sold 18 million units of its Galaxy S III, while Apple sold 16.2 million units of its iPhone 4S. One thing to note is that the iPhone 5 was released during the quarter as well and accounted for 6 million sales— a number that should increase exponentially when we see the Q4 results. Still, it is mighty nice to see Samsung hold a big-time trump card across all its competitors… for now at least.

 
More details of the news can be found once you hit the break.

 

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Beginning To Receive Jelly Bean Update In Germany

 

In all the hubbub of Samsung’s smartphones getting the coveted Jelly Bean update, we seem to have forgotten that its other devices are expected to get Jelly Bean as well. So that’s why it’s our sincerest pleasure to report to you all that owners of the Galaxy Note 10.1 can now look forward to the initial rollout of Jelly Bean for their device. According to SamMobile, owners of the device in Germany have begun receiving the OTA notification of the update and is even posted online at samfirmware.com. The Jelly Bean update comes in at 300MB in size and brings the German G-Note 10.1 to the latest software build.

So now that the update is slowly, but sure rolling out, it’s only a matter of time before we see the update roll out to the rest of the markets worldwide, including those of us here in the States.

source: SamMobile

Angry Birds Star Wars finally released into Google Play Store [Video]

Well folks, the day has finally come! Rovio has released their much anticipated Star Wars version of their much popular Angry Birds series. So, what can you expect from this game? Here’s a list:

HOURS AND HOURS OF ENGAGING GAMEPLAY – Explore more than 80 levels in iconic locations like Tatooine and the Pig Star. Can you dodge Imperial pigs, laser turrets, Tusken Raider pigs, and the dark side of the Force to get all three stars?

NEW GAMEPLAY MECHANICS – Use lightsabers, Blasters and Jedi powers to wreak havoc on the Imperial Pigs!

LEVEL UP YOUR BIRDS – Keep playing and level up your birds to improve their skills!

SECRETS AND HIDDEN GOODIES – Can you unlock all the R2-D2 and C-3PO bonus levels?

FREE UPDATES – This is only the beginning of the epic saga!

THE MIGHTY FALCON
Stuck on a tricky level? Earn stars and call the Mighty Falcon to rain down the destruction. New goals, achievements and gameplay!

PATH OF THE JEDI
The ultimate training ground for a Young Jedi, this in-app purchase unlocks 40 Dagobah Challenge Levels with Jedi Master Yoda! Master the Path of the Jedi to unlock the ultimate lightsaber!

Obviously by the looks of things, Rovio didn’t just skin and theme it to look like Star Wars, they really put in some work and revamped the entire game to cater to the Star Wars fanatics. There’s a free version and an HD version ($2.99) available. You can check out the video trailer of the game below after the break!

Bell introduces array of new unlimited talk and text plans

Canadian carrier Bell mobility has announced a slew of new unlimited talk and text plans that are slated to go head to head with Roger’s recently announced offerings. Unsurprisingly, unlimited data is nowhere to be found, but the company does manage to undercut a few other northern carriers in terms of pricing.

The new plans include:

  • $55/month 1000 minutes, 200 MB broadband data
  • $65/month unlimited local talk, 1 GB broadband data and 10 hours of Bell MobileTV
  • $75/month unlimited local talk, 3 GB broadband data and 10 hours of Bell MobileTV
  • $95/month unlimited Canada-wide talk, 5 GB broadband data and 10 hours of Bell MobileTV
Bell is also offering unlimited nationwide long-distance calling for an additional $10 per month. The new plans will be available beginning November 9th and can be purchased online or in any brick-and-mortar store.

Source: NewsWire

Droid RAZR HD gets custom recovery and Safestrap functionality

The day Droid RAZR HD and Maxx HD users have been waiting so anxiously for is finally upon us. A developer by the name of Hashcode has released what is known as a “Safestrap” application in the form of an installable .apk file, effectively allowing users to play around with the phone’s software without fear of bricking their device.

The new application gives users the ability to partition multiple sections of the handset’s internal storage in order to flash custom ROMs without affecting the firmware you use as your daily driver. Tinkerers will be excited to know that this is also the method by which you will use to flash a custom recovery, ultimately giving you complete control ofyour RAZR HD.

For more information and directions on how to perform the process, jump past the break.

Google releases factory images for Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S devices on Sprint and AT&T

It has been a good week for hackers who want to experiment with their Android powered devices. Earlier this week Samsung released source code for several devices, like the Galaxy S III Mini, the AT&T Samsung Galaxy Note II, and their Galaxy Tab devices. Now it is Google’s turn to contribute a little something back with the posting of factory images for several Nexus devices.

Huawei Ascend D Quad XL headed to WIND Mobile

A leaked promotional poster from WIND has revealed that the carrier is gearing up to release Huawei’s impressive Ascend D Quad XL smartphone. The Canadian carrier has already rolled out the LG Optimus 4X and Samsung Galaxy Note II, so another quad-core device is simply icing on the figurative cake.

There’s no official information regarding when the device will actually see a launch or how much it will cost when it arrives, but considering the handset has launched elsewhere for around $500, we’d expect more of the same. As a refresher, the Ascend D Quad XL sports a 4.5-inch 720 x 1280 panel, an in-house 1.4GHz quad-core SoC and an 8-megapixel rear shooter. There’s also a 1.3-megapixel camera on the front for video chat, as well as 8GB of on board storage and 1GB of RAM.

Source: MobileSyrup

Images leak for the Sony C6603 ‘Yuga’

We reported about a new Sony beast dubbed the “Odin” or C650X (the X gets replaced with a number) from a leaked agent profile and shortly after, an image leaked. Now we have images of a C6603 compliments of German site Android Schweiz, with a codename “Yuga”. I am assuming this is the same phone, but with a new bump in the model number. The specs seem the same as anticipated, 5-inch 1080p display, 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2GB of RAM, and running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. They are claiming the camera is 12MP, but you would think it would be the 13MP Exmor RS. Who knows, that could still change. Another tidbit is that it will sport a unibody design so that means no removable battery, but they will include a microSD slot and microHDMI port. Could we see this at CES? More pics after the break.

Apple lands a patent for a rectangle with rounded corners

Oh my, our broken patent system is at it again. Yesterday Apple was awarded patent D670,286, which is a design patent pertaining to the iPad’s “ornamental” design. In a sense it’s a patent for a rectangle with rounded edges covering a “portable display device.” Before everyone screams foul, it remains to be seen if it will be worth anything to Apple.

Apple already has a design patent D504,889, and they successfully convinced Judge Lucy Koh that the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 should be banned based on it. Of course, in August, a jury didn’t find the Tab 10.1 infringed on that patent. Back then Samsung was quoted as saying it was “unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners.” Interestingly enough Apple now has the patent with this new ‘286.

Rumored Microsoft Office app for mobile devices screens captured

Last month we reported on an event in the Czech Republic where a representative of Microsoft revealed native versions of Microsoft Office were being prepared for both the Android and iOS platforms. The timeline hinted at mobile versions being ready sometime in the first quarter of 2013.

Today, The Verge was able to obtain some screenshots of the app that seem to indicate development is well underway. The screenshots suggest that at least MS Word, MS PowerPoint and MS Excel files will be supported. It is not clear how much editing may be possible using the app, assuming you would want to try that. The screenshots also seem to confirm the information suggesting an Office 365 subscription will be required.

AT&T refunds wireless overcharge fees after FCC investigation

AT&T has had their share of unlucky business with the FCC, and it looks like it’s happened again. Back in 2010, AT&T had discovered an error in their systems that moved some subscribers onto more costly data plans without the subscriber’s consent. Even though AT&T owned up to the mistake and refunded customers who contacted them about being overcharged, the FCC started an investigation about a year ago.

According to AT&T, the switch affected only .03% of their customers, and on average only incurred an extra $25 – $30 per month charge, which could have been much worse, although I certainly would’ve been pretty upset at an extra $30 per month. On top of reimbursing customers for those charges, AT&T has agreed to pay an additional $700,000 fine, as well as spend more resources properly training employees and notifying customers of changes to their bill. AT&T definitely looks eager to keep their customers happy and make efforts to keep them happy in the future. You can’t fault them too much for that, even if it came a little late in this situation.

source: Reuters

Sprint set to buy US Cellular’s Midwestern airwaves and customers

 

Sprint has agreed to buy airwaves and customers from the Midwest section of US Cellular’s market to the tune of $480 million. Not a cheap acquisition, but Sprint hopes to use this band of coverage in parts of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio to bolster their 4G LTE coverage. Considering Sprint is falling pretty far behind in LTE coverage compared to AT&T and Verizon, I’d say that’s a pretty smart move.

Shadowgun:Deadzone officially out of beta and on Play Store November 15th

About a month ago, Madfinger Games released the multi-player version of their popular 3rd-person shooter Shadowgun. The beta was initially open only to those with Tegra 3 devices and then later opened up to other devices. On November 15th the game will come out of beta status for all to enjoy. Once the finished product is released onto the Play Store, it’ll contain ten playable characters, a variety of weapons, equipment, and two game modes with up to 12 players total. The game will also feature a ranking system which, as you progress, will unlock other features. As mentioned, the game will be available on November 15th free of charge, but will have the option for in-game purchases.

 

source:  @MADFINERGames