Samsung big mover, Android maintains lead in latest comScore report

by Jeff Causey on
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comScore released their latest market share numbers for February 2014 for the U.S. smartphone market. Android continued to maintain a dominant position as the leading platform for smartphones with 52.1% of the market, a small increase of 0.2% compared to November 2013. Apple’s iOS also improved, by half of Android’s growth, moving from 41.2% to 41.3% of the market. The big winner in terms of percent growth was Microsoft’s platform which jumped from 3.1% to 3.4% of the market. Combined with a major slide by Blackberry, dropping 0.6% to only 2.9% of the market, Microsoft has taken over the third spot behind Android and iOS. » Read the rest

Google’s improved camera app will focus on portrait shots and effects

by Christian de Looper on
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Google has been focusing a lot on their camera app on Android, and they are almost ready to show off exactly what they’ve been working on. Sources close to Google have revealed that the tech giant is testing the new app, sporting a refreshed UI, a background blurring effect for portrait photos, and improved panorama shots. Google is also reportedly fixing issues with the default photo framing, and users will be able to take photos with a 100& no-crop viewfinder.

Not only will Google make the improvements outlined above, but they will also make the app more easily extendable, allowing for third-party filters. The update will be released through a standalone update to the camera app, rather than through the Android 4.4.3 update.

Source: Engadget

Google likely to play key role in latest Apple patent trial with Samsung

by Jeff Causey on
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Apple and Samsung were scheduled to return to the courtroom today in the latest round of legal disputes between the two smartphone giants. Unlike the first trial that focused heavily on hardware issues, this new round will emphasize software, especially features found in the Android and iOS operating systems. That focus on software features found in Android means Google will play a much larger role this time around. » Read the rest

Team Win Recovery Project (TWRP) now available for AT&T, Sprint and International variant of the HTC One M8

by Alihassan Mahdi on
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Just a few days ago, Samsung’s Galaxy S 5 was rooted and the method was made available to the public, thanks to XDA developer, Chainfire. Now, the HTC One M8 is next in line as developers at Team Win Recovery Project have already created the TWRP for the Sprint, AT&T and International variant of the HTC One M8.

The custom recovery for the Sprint variant is already available on Team Win’s webpage, however the International version hasn’t been posted over there. So to get it, you’ll have to head to the XDA developer page linked at the end of this article. If you’ve rooted before, the method is pretty similar. » Read the rest

“Android apps” are the most favorite feature of the Nokia X according to a poll conducted by Nokia

by Alihassan Mahdi on
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The Nokia X is the first Android powered handset by Nokia which generated quite a buzz. It was recently reported that the pre-orders of the handset reached 1 million in China in just four days, although we later found out that no payment was actually required to pre-order, it was more of a registration to be eligible to enter the contest.

» Read the rest

Analyst weighs in with predicted specs, release date of Amazon smartphone

by Jeff Causey on
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KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has a reputation for accurately predicting device manufacturer plans long before announcements are made. He has mainly made his mark with regard to Apple products, although he has covered Samsung on occasion. He is now turning his sights on Amazon and the rumored smartphone coming from the retail giant. In a note to clients, Kuo says,

“we predict Amazon (US) will launch its own brand smartphone in 3-6 months, using the same hardware strategy as used for its e-reader and tablet.” » Read the rest

Huawei will not release a Dual OS smartphone

by Alihassan Mahdi on
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A few weeks ago, Huawei’s Chief Marketing Officer, Shao Yang, said that the company is planning to release a Dual OS smartphone powered by Android and Windows Phone and that it would be available in Q2. However, according to a recent report made by FierceWireless, Huawei said that the company has no plans to release a Dual OS smartphone denying a recent statement made by its executive.

“Huawei Consumer Business Group adopts an open approach towards mobile operating systems to provide a range of choices for consumers,” the company said in a statement to FierceWireless. “However, most of our products are based on Android OS, [and] at this stage there are no plans to launch a dual-OS smartphone in the near future.” » Read the rest

Updated Skype application promises to save more battery life

by Harrison Kaminsky on
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Many Skype users prefer to stay logged out of the service on their phones and tablets while not video chatting because of a fear of drained battery. If you remember, Google admitted that the Nexus 5 battery is currently experiencing faster battery drain due to the camera communicating with apps such as Skype.

Skype just updated the Android app to version 4.7, which will hopefully alleviate the situation. Just one other change includes message notifications in group chats being turned off by default.

Battery life is precious these days, so anything Skype can do to improve the situation is good news.

» Read the rest

Motorola Care app updated to become Motorola Help

by Harrison Kaminsky on
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Motorola’s support application, Motorola Care, has been updated to become Motorola Help, and is only compatible of Motorola’s newest series of devices, including the Moto X, Moto G, Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra and Droid Mini.

With the app, you’ll be able to view FAQs, tutorials and tips regarding your phone. If you’re an Android-newbie, this app is a must-have.

Hit the break for some screen shots and a link to the app in the Play Store.

» Read the rest

Google files patent application for a new radial menu feature in Android

by Alihassan Mahdi on
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The radial menu gesture was first introduced in Android 3.0 Honeycomb, which made it easier for users to perform various browser tasks quickly. A similar concept was introduced in the Galaxy Note 3 known as the Air Command.

According to a new report, Google has patented a new radial menu concept with a sub-menu feature. The radial menu consists of a circular menu, each corresponding to various commands that is initiated upon a user’s selection. Instead of making use of a one finger gesture, this new radial menu implementation requires two fingers, the thumb which acts as the first anchor point, and your second finger which opens up a sub-menu with a circular list of options to choose from. » Read the rest