Microsoft inks their 15th Android licensing deal, Motorola still stubborn

by Robert Nazarian on
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You have to hand it to Microsoft. As Apple fights it out with Android manufacturers, Microsoft is quietly signing licencing deals. This all started last year when they were able to grab deals with HTC, Samsung, Acer, and ViewSonic. In fact, back in October they had a total of 10 deals.

As of today that total is at 15 with the latest one involving Honeywell International, Inc. It’s based on their digital assistant called the Dolphin, which is meant for field workers with data capture being its primary use.

All 15 of these deals generate quite a bit of money for Microsoft, and since they can’t sell any phones, this really helps their bottomline.

With 15 deals, you would think there really isn’t a company left to go after, but there is one major player yet to sign anything, and that’s Motorola. Microsoft recently scored some victories here in the U.S. and Germany, but Motorola continues to fight long and hard. It really makes me wonder why Motorola’s patents were worth so much when they’re forced to defend themselves constantly. Microsoft would rather Motorola sign a deal just like everyone else in order to save on legal fees, but kudos to Motorola for not giving in.

source: wsj

 

 

American Express never agreed to be part of Google Wallet but negotiations are in progress

by Robert Nazarian on
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A couple of days ago Google announced a major update to Google Wallet and one of the major changes was the ability to use any major debit or credit card. They mentioned Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express, but apparently American Express wasn’t officially part of the program. An American Express rep said that users a free to load American Express cards into Google Wallet and use them, but they never agreed to anything.

“We want to make sure Google’s mobile wallet product meets the standards we set for our Cardmembers in terms of transparency and clarity about transaction detail,” AmEx social media VP Bradley Minor told me. “Right now, American Express does not have an agreement with Google for our cards to be used in the Google mobile wallet.”

Later Google made this statement:

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Sony LT30 Mint to be named Xperia T

by Robert Nazarian on
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It is so hard for manufacturers to keep secrets these days. It’s amazing when you think about where you can dig up stuff. Take the upcoming Sony LT30 Mint. We know it won’t be called that, and it has to go through various certifications before it can be brought to market. One such certification is for the DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) Organization. It so happens that the LT30 just got certified under the name, Sony Xperia T. This certainly isn’t a shocker since Sony adopted the single-letter scheme for 2012.

The Xperia T will sport a 4.6-inch 720p (1280 x 720) display, a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4, and a 13MP camera. We should see this bad boy later this month in Berlin so stay tuned.

source: xperiablog

 

Android’s multiple user accounts gets showcased in video

by Robert Nazarian on
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A few days ago we told you about how Android already has some built in functionality for multiple user accounts, but just not complete. If you’re not familiar with what this concept is, it allows you to have separate log ins for your tablet or smartphone. For example, you could set up your tablet the way you want as far as home screens and whatever apps you use, but other family members could log in under a different account, and they would get their own set up of apps and home screens.

This is something that is within the AOSP, but not something that is ready for prime time. It only means that it’s something we will probably see in a later version of Android like 4.2 or 5.0. None of this will stop the amazing Android development community as XDA member zanderman112 was able to setup multiple accounts using Terminal Emulator. Unfortunately there isn’t too much functionality, but this is a major start. Check out the video after the break.

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It’s Official: The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 will be unveiled at Unpacked on August 29th

by Robert Nazarian on
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Yesterday we reported that Samsung sent invitations for an Unpacked Event on August 29th at the IFA Conference in Berlin and we were 99.9% sure that it was going to be all about the Galaxy Note 2. We just moved to 100% as Samsung confirmed it to Reuters. Usually Samsung doesn’t confirm such details, but Samsung is probably looking for a little media attention since Apple will probably unveil the iPhone 5 a couple of weeks later in mid September.

If you’re hoping Samsung unveiled their specs as well, forget it. They need to have some surprises for the event don’t they? We do expect a quad-core chip and a 5.5-inch display, but maybe they will surprise us with the display being a Super AMOLED Plus and a 12MP shooter. It seems like the perfect way to end the Summer.

source: reuters

Featured Play Store Newbie: Slices is a New Twitter App with Incredible Functionality in Tow [Social]

by Justin Crouch on
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I love a great Twitter app. I have often found myself using a few at a time just to find the best one, and now my search could be over. Slices is a new Twitter app developed by OneLouder, the makers of Tweetcaster, and aims to make your tweeting easier and more robust. Two core properties stick out to me when deciding what app I’ll use: beauty & functionality. To say Slices meets my expectations would be a huge understatement. OneLouder has provided just enough beauty to draw in the user experience and functionality that both Twitter pros and newbies alike will be satisfied.

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You can now pre-order the Samsung Galaxy S III from Ting

by Justin Crouch on
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Ting, a MVNO (Mobile Vitural Network Operator) running on Sprint’s network, is now offering the Samsung Galaxy S III for pre-order. You will have a choice of either Marble White or Pebble Blue and as this is prepaid, (no discounted handsets) the device will cost $529 (16GB) or $579 (32GB).

One drawback: you have to wait 3-6 weeks for your shiny new phone to ship. The good news is, for those who live in a Sprint LTE market, you’ll be able to browse the web at stunning LTE speeds! We have yet to confirm the official specs; Ting says their version will have only 1GB of RAM Vs. 2GB on other variants. Either this is a method to cut costs, or there was an error–hopefully the latter.

The Samsung Galaxy S III has been available for quite some time and is selling at record numbers, leading to Samsung destroying their shipment record in quarter two of this year. Widespread ability, and specs that leave nothing to desire are likely the main cause of its popularity. I know if I wasn’t packing a Galaxy Nexus, I would definitely pick one up! Are you on the Ting network? Let us know if you plan on picking up this powerful beast! Hit the break for the full press release.

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Chameleon Launcher Beta Now Available For Those Who Pledged

by Ed Caggiani on
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Canadian developer Teknision, makers of Kickstarter-funded Chameleon Launcher, said the beta version would be ready the first week of August, and they are right on target. If you pledged on Kickstarter, you can now find and install Chameleon Launcher Beta from the Google Play Store.

The interesting thing about this home screen replacement is how it treats the overall experience, covering every inch of the screen with widgets and apps. You can then create different home screens based on different situations (work, home, commute, etc) and have Chameleon show you the most relevant one based on GPS location, Wi-Fi network connected to, or time ranges.

Hit the break for screenshots, a video, and the download link.

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AT&T pushing Android 4.0.4 OTA to HTC One X; rooted users accept with caution

by Jeff Causey on
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Reports are coming in that AT&T has started pushing out an OTA update for the HTC One X today. The update, build number 2.20 that bumps Android to 4.0.4, has only gone out to a few users and it is unclear when it may roll out to the rest. Neither AT&T nor HTC have issued a change log that details what is included in the update. Users are reporting that it includes security fixes that block some root exploits, a setting to remove the menu button “bar” for some apps, and the ability to long press the multi-tasking button for a pop-up menu.

Users who have rooted their One X or who are thinking about doing so may not want to jump on this update just yet. The fixes for the root exploits have the consequence of also closing methods used to gain root access. Since AT&T and HTC do not offer bootloader unlocking on this version of the One X, the update will effectively block root access until the hackers figure out a new way to do so.

If you get the update, please post and let us know of any other changes that are included.

source: Android Central

rooCASE For Nexus 7 Review

by Ed Caggiani on
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When I got my Nexus 7 from Google I/O, there were no cases available for it, so I started using an old Kindle Fire case that someone donated to me just to get by. The fit was not right, and the elastic corner straps got in the way of the screen at times. Needless to say, it was barely better than no case at all.

So I started checking Amazon and eBay for possible cases to protect my new toy when I came across this interesting case by rooCASE with a very long name: The rooCASE Multi-Angle (Black) Vegan Leather Folio Case Cover for Google Nexus 7 Tablet. Phew! That’s a mouthful!

What interested me the most was that it had a built-in magnetic flap closure that enabled the Nexus 7′s sleep/wake feature. Oh, and also, it only cost $10. Can’t beat that! So I ordered two, one for me and one for my wife (yes, I got her a Nexus 7 as well).

So how do we like it? Read on after the break!

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