In line with Google’s priority of strengthening communication between developers and their users, they have given developers the ability to reply to user reviews via the Google Play Developer Console. Responses by developers will appear publicly below the original comment in the Play Store. Once a developer replies to a user’s comment, the user will receive an email and can then either reply to the developer directly by email, or update their review.
Back in November, Play Store reviews became integrated with Google+, with the goal of less anonymity leading to higher quality comments. Today’s update strengthens communication a step further. It’s a feature that’s long overdue and should help improve app development.
Source: Android Developers Blog
If you like quiz games, you might want to check out Quiz of Seers from Blyts. We are very familiar with Blyts because we covered another cool game from them called Greedy Spiders. Quiz of Seers is a new app that’s already getting great user reviews. It offers three game modes: Single, Versus, and Live. Single is where you play on your own to get some practice. The Versus mode lets you play against your friends or random players, and the Live mode pits you in battles with multiple players worldwide in real time. Whichever mode you choose, you gain points that will ultimately earn you potions. Each potion gives you the ability to eliminate one of the multiple choice answers. Signing up is easy, you have your choice of creating an account via email or Facebook.
During a quarterly earnings call last Thursday, NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang revealed Tegra 4 powered devices should be announced this quarter as several tablets are in development. Two of the devices will be coming from HP including the HP Slate 21 AIO and the HP Slatebook 10 X2. Toshiba also has a tablet device in the works, the Toshiba AT10LE-A, which will be powered by the Tegra 4. Going down in size a bit, sources believe ZTE is working on a “super phone” that will be powered by the Tegra 4 chip. In house, NVIDIA themselves are working on a handheld gaming console Project Shield that will be powered by the new quad-core chip.
The new Tegra 4 chip was announced earlier this year at CES 2013. The Tegra 4 is built on four Cortex-A15 processors and 72 graphic processors capable of driving 3200×2000 LED displays with Ultra HD video. Running at 1.9 GHz, the Tegra 4 is the company’s successor to the Tegra 3. Although slightly less powerful, the Tegra 4i will start to hit the market during the latter half of 2013 with an integrated i500 LTE modem.
Huang sees “these new computing devices becoming like entry-level PCs.” NVIDIA is trying to throw as much power into the devices as possible as they think performance will be a differentiator for buyers in the future.
source: Tom’s Hardware
A few months ago, Amazon announced their Coins currency for its Kindle Fire devices. These coins would essentially be in-app currency exclusively for Amazon’s App Store and can be used to purchase apps, games, and in-app content. The Coins have an exchange rate similar to normal currency, so 1 coin equals 1 cent. Kindle users will receive a free 500 Coins to test the service out, and more Coins can be purchased from Amazon.
The biggest advantage to using these Coins is buying in bulk. Amazon says you’ll be able to get up to 10% off if you buy large amounts of coins, so it can save you money in the long run. The Coins also help developers because it gives consumers a universal currency to use to buy apps and games, so that’s always a plus. Developers will still get their 70% of revenue from app purchases, so no change there. I think this is going to be a great service for Amazon and Kindle Fire users, and I think it’s safe to say we can expect Amazon to push this new system pretty hard in the next few months.
A couple years ago, HP took a stab at getting into the tablet device field with the HP Touchpad, a webOS powered device. The project was quickly canceled and HP ended up selling off the units they had produced for rock bottom prices. Along with the death of the Touchpad, developers abandoned plans to produce apps for the platform. This left owners with a severe limitation as to what they could do with their Touchpad tablet. Phoenix International Communications is hoping to address that gap by resurrecting an old project to build an Application Compatibility Layer that would let users run Android apps on a Touchpad alongside webOS applications. Read more
While Samsung hasn’t officially announced the multiple rumored variants of its recent Galaxy S 4 flagship, it is likely they will launch as soon as next month. The most recent leak is apparently the first photo from its cameraphone variant, the SM-C101, also known as the Galaxy S 4 Zoom, which was recently spotted in Bluetooth SIG. The phone will prominently feature a 16-megapixel camera with a massive 10x optical zoom.
There is still no word on what this device will pack internally, but some have speculated that it will be similar to the recently leaked Galaxy S 4 Mini so as not to hurt the S 4’s sales. The S 4 Zoom will join the S 4 Mini, S 4 Mega and the water and dust-proof S 4 Activ with release dates this summer. Read more
Sony released specs today regarding its newest addition to the Xperia Z family today in the form of the Xperia ZR. The ZR packs many of the same components and waterproof capabilities as the Xperia Z, putting it in the mid to high-end range. Sony’s putting a lot of emphasis on the ZR’s higher IP rating (IP55 and IP58 as opposed to the Z’s IP55 and IP57), which makes it perfect for those HD recordings of your underwater adventures.
Powering Sony’s new aquatic handset is the Snapdragon S4 Pro 1.5 GHz quad-core processor also found on the Xperia Z and ZL. Rounding out the internals are 2GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage and a microSD slot. The display measures out at 4.55-inches with 720p resolution. On the back they put a 13-megapixel Sony Exmor RS camera with an LED flash and “burst mode” capable of taking 15 frames per second.
If you’re a T-Mobile customer who owns a Samsung Galaxy S III, you’ll be happy to learn that an update should be arriving very soon for your device, in the form of Android 4.1.2. The only issue is that we’re not really sure of what the update includes (other than multi-window support), as T-Mobile has yet to update their support page.
However, we do know that the update adds two new apps, including Paper Artist and Group Play. It also supposedly adds T-Mobile’s new “4G” logo to the phone’s notification bar. The update is a full 187MB and according to reports, owners started receiving the update as early as 3AM this morning.
Let us know how the update is if you got it, and we’ll let you guys know some more information as soon as T-Mobile updates their support page.
Another shot of the white Nexus 4 has surfaced, which seems to backup earlier photos of a white Nexus 4 we reported to you back in January. But as we near Google I/O 2013, we’re expecting an official announcement (or maybe even a release) of the device, hopefully with some bumped up specs.
This time, the device ended up in the hands of Google+ user Ervin Sue, who obtained the phone on a buy and sell website. Although the outer hardware looks to be the same (aside from color), we’re hopeful that Google at least adds a modern Snapdragon 600 processor and 4G LTE.
When Google I/O starts in a couple of days we’ll be sure to have some more information— but until then, you’ll just have to be patient!
Source: Ervin Sue
According to a new report by Strategy Analytics, existing smartphone users in the second half of 2012 were most likely to be interested in devices with a screen size between 4.2-inches and 4.7-inches. These statistics show an increase from a similar study done in the second half of 2011 where the preferred screen size was 4.3-inches.
Those who intended on buying their first smartphone showed a preference towards slightly smaller screens, while most current smartphone owners were interested in an increase over their current device. Males preferred slightly larger screens than females, and current brand ownership made an impact on preference as well. Nearly all participants in the study showed a preference for their next device to have a larger screen size than their current handset.
Source: Strategy Analytics