Nexus 4 massive shortage due to ‘huge demand’

Finally, some official news has come out of the Google/LG camp regarding the stock status of the hot Nexus 4, albeit not groundbreaking news. Per LG, the massive shortage of the hottest device this year is due to – huge demand. Wow LG, you don’t say. I assume, however, that how you categorize that ‘demand’ is another story.

As we know, the original batch sold out in under 30 minutes, most likely due to legit demand. However, as soon as the public got wind of this hot device this close to the shopping season, it in turn opened up the market of the re-sellers exacerbating the shortage. Andy Coughlin, the head of mobile at LG UK, added, “We are working closely with Google to ensure that those who wish to purchase a handset are able to do so.” 

So far, from what we know and can deduce, all signs point toward Google missing on their forecast when originally placing their orders directly through LG’s headquarters in Seoul. Hey, it happens. It’s not like Google had any past history to gauge demand using this model and price-point. It’s easy for us to play “Monday Morning quarterback,” but in the business world you’re most likely not going to hit forecasts directly on the head, especially in this case. You’re either going to come in higher than planned or lower. And, frankly, the situation they’re in now is much better than the alternative. The last thing you want is to be stuck with inventory in this economy. Google will learn from this, and should be prepared next go around. So, everyone take a deep breath. It’s going to be alright.

source: CNET

Sony releases Emma, a flash tool for flashing stock ROMs on unlocked Xperia devices

Sony continues to show us how much love they have for hacking and tinkering by releasing Emma, a new flash tool for Xperia devices with unlocked bootloaders. It’s in beta, and it gives users the ability to revert back to Sony stock ROMs. For starters, it’s only available on the Xperia S, Xperia arc, and Xperia arc S, but more handsets will be added soon. You can download the software from their developer site and check out the video to see how easy it is.

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ASTRO File Manager adds Facebook photos integration with latest update

Ever since the inception of Android, ASTRO File Manager has been there providing us with a convenient way to organize our pictures, documents, and music on our devices. Today’s update brings even more features that’ll better fit into most users’ lifestyle – most notable Facebook Photo integration. Once you’re on the new version, you can then view and download your Facebook photos directly within ASTRO’s user interface.  Additionally, users on older versions of Android will be able to enjoy the same interface that ASTRO v4 brings. Below is a summary of the updates to this version:

  •  SWIPE SCREEN RIGHT to get to Clouds, Network Locations or Saved Searches fast
  •  SWIPE SCREEN LEFT to get to Tools (App Backup, Task Killer, SD Card Usage), Settings and Help
  •  NEW: Facebook Photo integration
  •  NEW: New Picture Gallery
  •  NEW: Image Viewer enhancements including rotate picture
  •  SkyDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox support
  •  Added Text Editor into v4

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T-Mobile moving entirely to Value Plans in 2013

I guess I can’t really say I didn’t see this one coming. Anyone somewhat in touch with T-Mobile could deduce that they would eventually move to this model, and today it was officially announced at T-Mobile’s Capital Market Days that they would be adopting this model full-time beginning in 2013. 80-percent of their post-paid customers are already on a Value Plan so it’s not a drastic change anyway. This would tell me that their customers prefer that type of plan, so why not adopt it full time to streamline operations?

If you’re not familiar with this model; you pay less per month on your bill, and have the option to either pay full price for your device up front or get the phone financed over 20 months. It now also gives those with an unlocked device the option to bring their own device to T-Mobile and take advantage of the Value rates. Additionally, get used to the term “Un-Carrier” as they threw that term out at the event during the announcement. I’m looking forward to how they’re going to market that and spin it. Below is a tweet from T-Mobile regarding the shift in business models:

Seems like a great way to show value for our customers.

There you have it. A dedicated shift in focus within the company summed up in one sentence. If you’re on T-Mobile currently, how do you feel about this? Also, if you’re carrier-shopping, how does this sway your decision?

source:  Twitter

Verizon Jelly Bean update on DROID RAZR HD and MAXX HD being pushed out now

We learned late last week that Jelly Bean would begin rolling out to the DROID RAZR HD and MAXX HD ‘in phases’ during this week. Now, it appears that Verizon has opened up the gates and all versions should be getting the update at this time. Look for that update notification and, as always, take a look in your About Phone options to see if you can grab it manually. The update will of course bring Google Now and the improvements to notifications. Additionally, Verizon has purportedly improved voice and data connectivity as well as made ‘improvements’ to the stock calendar. Anyone with the update that can provide specifics?

Thanks, Tom!

Validation issues force Rockstar to pull Grand Theft Auto: Vice City from Play Store

Rockstar Games announced it would bring the 10th anniversary edition of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City to the Play Store on December 6th, and they did. Unfortunately due to some weird errors, they’ve had to pull it right after getting it up. There appears to be some validation issues with the application, and Rockstar is aware of them:

We’re aware that some users have attempted to download Vice City: 10th Anniversary Edition from the Google Play Store and have experienced validation errors.

Just to be clear: the game is not available for Android devices just yet, and if you’re seeing it listed on the Store then this is an error, and you shouldn’t attempt to download it. We’ll keep you up to date and let you know as soon as the game is live and available to purchase.

Not good news, but hopefully the issue gets resolved sooner rather than later.

source: Computer and Video Games

MetroPCS announced upgrade Samsung Admire 4G, available for $169

Today MetroPCS has refreshed their Samsung Galaxy Admire, adding 4G LTE, a better screen, more processor power, and a bigger battery. It features a 3.65-inch TFT display, 1GHz CPU, and a 3MP camera. For $169 without a contract, though, that’s not too shabby. It does come preloaded with Android 2.3, which is likely to be a deal breaker for some. MetroPCS offers a service called joyn that supposedly integrates all of your mobile communications in one place, which is a neat idea. If you’re interested, hit the break for the press release. Read more

ARCHOS GamePad now available in Europe, coming to North America early 2013

ARCHOS announced the 7-inch GamePad in August, but we were still waiting on a release. Looks our friends in Europe can get a taste of it starting today. It’s officially available for a price of €149.99 ($195). They also announced that those of us in North America can expect to see it in early 2013. If you’re not familiar with the GamePad, it’s a 7-inch Android tablet with physical gaming buttons and analog sticks. Usually devices such as these become boring pretty quickly once the user finds out the lack of support that it has, but ARCHOS promises that you will be able to play just about any Android game with the GamePad, thanks to the revolutionary mapping tool. Basically, users can map the buttons and sticks to any game. Not to shabby. The 7-inch display has a resolution of 1024 x 600, and the rest of the specs include a 1.6GHz dual-core CPU, quad-core Mali 400 GPU, 8GB of internal memory, microSD for up to an additional 64GB of space, and a mini-HDMI port. It’s 10mm thick, weighs 330g, and sports Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. I’m interested to get my hands on one to see if it’s everything it promises to be.

Full press release after the break:

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SoundCloud updated to feature redesigned UI and new sharing features

SoundCloud is one of the most popular cloud storage and sharing apps for music. Today, SoundCloud has updated its app on the Play Store to bring in an updated interface, new search capabilities, and a brand new repost feature, all of which are welcome changes. If you’re looking for an easy way to make some music and get it out for people to hear, it’s hard to go wrong with SoundCloud. Hit the link below for the links.

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Snapseed, Award Winning Photo Editor, Hits The Play Store

Photo editors certainly are not lacking in numbers at the Google Play Store but Snapseed, today’s entry, comes in with the most fanfare since Instagram brought its Lomography inspired filter set & square frames to Android. Apple named Snapseed the iPad App Of The Year for 2011. This year the Technical Image Press Association awarded it with the 2012 Best Mobile Photo App honors. If the awards aren’t enough to pique your interest, Google apparently thought enough of the app to buy the developer, Nik Software.

So what does the app itself bring, besides quick and easy Google+ integration? It has a  lot of the same settings you’d expect from a photo editing app. It has a quick auto fix option, a variety of filters and several borders. It packs a pretty thorough set of adjustments (white balance, contrast, saturation, cropping, straightening, etc.). While these settings are nothing new to photo editors, its the execution that sets Snapseed apart. The adjustments work well and in a sleek easy-to-use interface. I was all set to drop the $10 on Photoshop Touch for the Nexus 7 but now I think I’ll have to give this a shot first!

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