When Motorola released its flagship, Moto X smartphone, one of the most talked about features was the ability to order a fully customized version of the device. Unfortunately, that feature has been limited to AT&T since the phone's release and for the most part, only AT&T customers have been able to get their hands on a customized Moto X.
It appears that Motorola is about to change that if a leak by @evleaks is true. This morning a Twitter post by the infamous mobile device leakster was posted that suggest that Motorola will release Moto Maker to Sprint, Verizon, and T-Mobile by the beginning of next week. This opens up some pretty cool customization options for the handset on all of the major US carriers at a unprecedentedly low price of $149 for the top end model.
Phablets are all the rage today, and for users who crave that ultra-large screen but have been limited to their standard-sized Lumia device, life is about to get better. Customers on AT&T can purchase Nokia's Lumia 1520 phablet beginning on November 22nd for just $200 on-contract, with pre-orders beginning today.
For that $200 you get a 6-inch device running Windows Phone 8, a 2.2 GHZ, quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 Processor, and a 20-megapixel PureView camera. Users who purchase the device through the Windows Store will receive an additional $70 app credit, a copy of Halo Spartan Assault, and a free flip cover. Purchasing through AT&T will land you a $20 credit and 50GB of free cloud storage, with Halo Spartan Assault tossed in as well. For those looking to pick up a larger Windows Phone device, this may not be a bad deal!
HP has just released what is widely considered the most budget friendly, fully featured Windows tablets on the market today. The all new HP Omni 10 runs the full version (not RT) of Microsoft's Windows 8.1, and does not cut corners when it comes to hardware. Infact, the Omni 10 features better hardware than its competitors costing much more.
The Omni 10 features a 10.1-inch Gorilla Glass 3 display that features a full 1920x1200 resolution with a pixel density of 224 pixels per inch. An Intel Atom Z3770 powers the Omni 10 with 2GB of RAM onboard to keep things running nice and smooth. Storage is a little small at just 32GB, but that is easily augmented by a microSD slot on the side of the device. Additionally the Omni 10 features up to 8.5 hours of battery life, for an all day productivity on-the-go experience. HP said that the Omni 10 is available now and will retail at an MSRP of $399.
Mobile devices that utilize Lithium-ion or Lithium-polymer batteries are always at risk of catching fire or even exploding if they are overcharged, or if their battery pack gets damaged. Usually the culprit is the result of using a cheap charger that was not approved by the manufacturer.
Unfortunately for Apple, neither were the case in a recent incident involving the company's new iPad Air. The tablet in question was sitting idle on a display stand at a Vodafone store in Australia when it suddenly exploded and burst into flames. No one was injured in the incident, but firefighters had to be called to extinguish the flames and extract the smoke from the store. In true form Apple is staying silent on the matter and had sent a team to collect the iPad Air for analysis.
While this very well may be a one-off incident, I would not leave an iPad Air laying on something like a couch, bed or pillow until Apple releases a statement on the matter. After personally witnessing an iPhone 4 catch fire while on an official apple vehicle charger, I know how quickly the devices can go from functioning fine, to going up in smoke.
The HTC One is arguably the highest quality Android-based smartphone ever made, and it looks like its maker is wasting no time in developing its successor. Known by the codename, M8, the phone has just seen its alloy unibody chassis leaked by the Taiwanese site ePrice.
The images are a little blurry, and the lighting is atrocious, but judging from the rounded corners, this does appear to be a legitimate chassis for something other than current generation models. Interestingly enough, the chassis does appear to be machined to fit in a fingerprint sensor above the rear camera. Other rumors are suggesting that HTC will increase the screen size from 5.0 to 5.2 inches as well as bumping the resolution up to 2K. I am sure that we will see many more leaks, and rumors on specs as the Mobile World Congress conference approaches in Q1 2014.
Apple's new iPad Air uses some impressive display technology from IGZO, which has resulted in a reduction of weight of over 25%. Most of ths is thanks to lowered power consumption, which allows the iPad Air to feature a thinner battery, too.
IHS iSuppli has released its cost analysis, which points out that Apple's iPad Air uses just 36 LEDs to light the display, which is down from as many as 84 LEDs in previous models of the iPad. The iOS giant has also reduced the thickness of the display assembly, so with all of this display-related changes, we can see that the company has been capable of improving the size and weight of the new iPad Air.
But, does this lead to a better-looking display? Not exactly. Ray Soneria from DisplayMate Technologies has said that while the IGZO-based technology in the iPad Air has allowed for a thinner, more battery-friendly tablet, it doesn't look as good as something like the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 display, which is based on LTPS (low temperature polysilicon technology). LTPS offers even better performance, and lower power requirements than the IGZO display.
The holiday season is nearly upon us, and even though we have the iPad Air, Nexus 7, and numerous other great tablets, DigiTimes' research arm is expecting Q4 tablet shipments to grow 18.1% sequentially to 42.15 million shipments this year.
But, year-over-year, we're looking at a drop of 2.5%, according to DigiTimes' report. The high-end, high-margin smartphone market continues to slow down, but the tablet market is doing a mirror image of the smartphone market unfortunately. This is pushing electronics manufacturers to new areas, such as wearable computing, to continue their growth.
We should see 2014 become the start of wearable computing, with devices like Google Glass really taking off in the consumer space.
If you have an old iPad 1 or aging iPad 2 laying around you might want to pay attention to this article. Today Target announced that it will be offering a minimum $200 gift card on all working iPads. When you bring your iPad in, a specialist at Target will appraise it and if the value is more than $200 then you will receive that amount.
The gift card does not have to be used towards the purchase of another iPad either, you could use it towards the purchase of a new Nexus 5, Nexus 7, or even Nexus 10. In fact the resulting gift card can be used to purchase anything target sells. For those who may not use their old or newish iPad as much as they thought, this could be a pretty sweet deal!
This morning, Verizon announced the launch of a self-branded 7-inch tablet called the Ellipsis 7. The tablet is built around Android and is designed to compete with Google's Nexus 7 and other budget friendly, small form factor tablets. At the moment, not much is known about the new slate other than what it looks like.
Verizon has said that the Ellipsis 7 will feature an "HD" screen, LTE connectivity, and front and rear cameras. Android 4.4 appears to be left out and from the release images, it appears to run Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. While that is an interesting twist, the most odd part of the whole deal is the fact that Verizon released its own tablet in the first place. This puts the company in direct competition with other manufacturers such as Apple, Samsung, and Google whose products it sells in its stores. The new Ellipsis 7 will retail for $249.99 off contract beginning on November 7th.
iFixit has just posted their completed teardown of Google's Nexus 5, and rewards it with a repairability score of 8 out of 10. Such a high score is mainly due to the phone being built somewhat around a modular design which makes it each to replace things like the screen, headphone jack, speakers, and camera modules.
One of the big reveals of the teardown is that the Nexus 5 features an alloy chassis that is then skinned by a plastic frame which provides for a solid feel while maintaining a decent pricing point. Other notable fines include SK Hynic RAM which covers the Qualcomm CPU completely, as well as the SanDisk supplied flash memory.
The teardown is quite interesting to look at even in you have no idea what anything is. The amount of technology that companies like LG are able to pack into such a small space today and still remain modular simply amazes me. The fact that device is easy to put back together after its been torn down says something about LGs engineers and the level of skill they have.
When you first heard about LG's flexible smartphone, the G Flex, you probably thought it was just a name and that the physical device was unbendable. But, you'd be wrong: it is flexible.
Engadget has a 14-second video where you can see that when a 'reasonable amount of force' is pressed on the G Flex, it can actually bend. This is a great feature when you mix it with the "self-healing" coating on the rear of the device, which can automatically fix hairline scratches that might be cuased in your pocket, or handbag.
Nokia fans will be happy to hear that there is at least one more Nokia branded Lumia coming down the pipes before Microsoft completes its acquisition. The new Nokia Lumia 525 has just been leaked via the Chinese certification agency TENAA, and other than hardware updates, it appears to look just like the Lumia 520.
If rumors are true, the 525 will feature a dual-core Qualcomm processor, 1GB of RAM and a 5-megapixel rear camera. Other rumors are suggesting that the device will be based around portable music and will feature pre-installed apps to facilitate music streaming. If this is truly the successor to the popular Lumia 520, Nokia / Microsoft can expect to see a major boost in sales in 2014.
The Lumia 520 is the best selling Windows Phone from Nokia with more than a 23-percent market share of all Windows Phones sold. That equates to more than 2 million Lumia 520s sold since its release based on the 8.8 million Lumia devices Nokia says it has sold. Pricing and availability have not yet been announced, and it is still unclear when Nokia might launch the device.
When Motorola first trademarked the Moto G name, everyone thought that it would be the company's first smartwatch based off of Motorola's Gem prototype. Unfortunately rumors have surfaced that the Moto G is actually a cheaper, and slightly less performing version of the company's flagship smartphone the Moto X.
Today Motorola launched a new teaser site that does very little to clue us in on what exactly the Moto G is, but there are pretty animation of what appears to be a Motorola connected world. If the rumors do turn out to be true, then the Moto G will feature a 4.5-inch screen, a Qualcomm processor clocked at 1.2GHz, and 8GB of onboard memory. Android 4.4 "KitKat" will be present and the phone will showcase the power of 4.4 on less powerful devices. As for pricing, with the Moto X recently being dropped to $100, we should expect to see the G retail on contract for between $59 and $79.
All About Samsung has a new video that shows off Samsung's Z9005 smartphone, which is running the Samsung/Intel-developed Tizen OS. We get to have an in-depth look at the smartphone, which is the best look at it yet.
Tizen is running on Samsung's Galaxy S III smartphone, with the South Korean giant rumored to be preparing Tizen as an alternative to the unstoppable Android OS. Tizen looks like it heavily borrows from Android, which should keep Samsung's customers happy if it does indeed push Tizen onto its smart devices in the near future.
The single killer point of the Nexus 5 is its awesome price: $349. For this price, you're getting an awesome kit, at under half the price of the competition from Samsung and Apple.
But, there's always going to be a way to make money from something that is so cheap, with Best Buy stepping in with the best tech deal of 2013*. You can grab the $349 Nexus 5 for only $799, which sounds like a crazy deal if you ask me! But don't worry, the retailer was quick to change its deal once it hit tech sites and blogs, reducing it from $799 to $449.99.
*is sarcasm in its most pure form.
Microsoft has just pushed out an update for its Surface Pro 2 device, where the company claims to have increased battery life thanks to allowing the baked-in Marvell-based Wi-Fi chip to achieve an even lower power state which results in overall improved battery life.
AnandTech did some testing with the latest firmware on the Surface Pro 2, noting an overall 16% increase in their video playback. Pre-firmware update numbers were sitting at 6.65 hours, but after the firmware update those numbers increased to 7.73 hours, something you cannot complain about when its given to you for free through a firmware update.
Oh the days of flip phones were glorious - you felt like a king. You whipped your phone out, flipped it open and started being the cool person on a flip phone. Not anymore, though.
Well, Samsung is going backwards with the new SCH-W2014 smartphone, which is the most powerful flip phone on the market. It features Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 SoC - a 2.3GHz quad-core part, 2GB of RAM, a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera, and 2-megapixel front-facer, with dual-SIM connectivity. Storage-wise, we have 32GB of on-board flash backed up by microSD expandability.
The screen itself is lacklustre, at just 3.7 inches it features an 800x480 resolution. It does win some brownie points back by being a Super AMOLED display, though. We have a removeable 1900mAh battery, and Android 4.3 as its OS. All of this comes in at 173.5g. Where it'll hurt you is the price: $1640 or so. This is absolutely insane, but there'll be some people who will cough up this money to own it.
Following yesterday's launch of Android 4.4 KitKat, Motorola has outlined which of its devices will be receiving the latest version of Android. Most of its flagship devices released in the last year will be seeing the update, but not on the list is the RAZR M, RAZR HD, and RAZR MAXX HD.
The Motorola Moto X will be receiving the update, but it is still unclear when that update might become available. With Motorola being owned by Google, I would expect the update to 4.4 to come swiftly as Google is pushing 4.4 as a defragmentation release. It would only make sense for the company to port Android 4.4 to as many of its devices as possible. This announcement comes after HTC announced that its HTC One would receive Android 4.4 within the next 90 days.
Market share analysis are beginning to roll in for the third quarter of 2013 and as expected, Android is still the dominate OS. Android currently holds an astronomical 81.3-percent of the global smartphone market share, with 204.4 million devices shipped. Those numbers are up from a market share of 75-percent and 129.6 million units shipped during Q3 2012.
Apple's iOS garnered a 13.4-percent market share with 33.8 million devices shipped during 2013. Shipments are up for Apple, but market share slipped from 15.6 during quarter 3 2012. Windows Phone managed to gain more of the market with a 4.1-percent share which is up 2-percent over the same quarter 2012. Windows phone saw only 10.2 million devices ship in the last three months though. Rounding things out is BlackBerry who managed to hold on to just 1-percent of the market with 2.5 million devices shipped.
After this mornings Android 4.4 announcement many were left wondering which of the top Android phones would be getting the update. Google said that its Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 devices would be receiving the update but its Galaxy Nexus would not. It appears that the HTC One will be the first non Nexus device to receive the update, beating Samsung's Galaxy S4 to the punch.
HTC has confirmed to Engadget that its HTC One will receive the update within the next 90 days and that the Google Play edition of the device will get its update within the next 15 days. Developer and Unlocked versions of the One will get their updates within the next 30 days. It is unclear if or when other HTC Devices will see Android KitKat pushed to them. Samsung, Sony, and LG have not yet released any update into either, though I fully expect to see update information from them in the next few days.
Well, well - Google has sold out of its 16GB Nexus 5 smartphones in the US, leaving just the 32GB variant on the Play Store's virtual shelves. It's only been a couple of hours since it launched, so this should come as a surprise for few.
The original Nexus 4 when it launched last year sold out in minutes, so we're just seeing history repeat itself. The new Nexus 5 features some impressive specifications with an even more impressive price point: just $349. The specs inside the Nexus 5 are the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 SoC, a quad-core part clocked in at 2.3GHz, 2GB of RAM, an 8-megapixel OIS rear-facing camera with LED flash, 4G LTE support (!), NFC, Bluetooth and of course, Android 4.4 KitKat.