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Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones Posts - Page 1

Panasonic P31 smartphone debuts with 5-inch screen

Panasonic has announced a new smartphone that is called the P31. For now, the only location we know for sure will get the P31 is India where it will sell for under Rs 11990. For the money, buyers get an Android device running version 4.2.2.

 

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It features a 12.7cm screen, working out to about 5-inches. The brain is a 1.3GHz quad-core processor. Panasonic uses an 8MP full HD resolution camera on the back with autofocus. Power comes from a 2000 mAh internal battery.

Continue reading 'Panasonic P31 smartphone debuts with 5-inch screen' (full post)

Samsung Galaxy S5 teardown estimates build cost

The Samsung Galaxy S5 has been one of the biggest smartphone launches that Samsung has had in recent years. Each time a new device launches, you can bet that a teardown showing what the smartphone is like on the inside is coming shortly thereafter.

 

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Samsung's Galaxy S5 has recently been torn down by research firm IHS with an eye on seeing what the smartphone costs Samsung. The result is a cost estimate of $256. IHS points out that the estimate is only for parts and manufacturing. Costs for marketing and other things required to sell devices are not figured in.

Continue reading 'Samsung Galaxy S5 teardown estimates build cost' (full post)


Dart wants to be your new, super small laptop adapter

If you're like me, you're tired of the old and sometimes proprietary laptop chargers in the world of technology. Well, FINsix wants to change that with Dart, the "world's smallest, lightest laptop adapter," which is now on Kickstarter.

 

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Dart is very powerful, packing in 65W of laptop charging prowess into its small form factor. Not only is it small, but it's simple, compatible - with most laptops, stylish and cool. It has AC input of 90V-265V and 50/60Hz, weighs just 60gm, and has a cable length of 6 feet. Dart is designed to work with all major laptop brands and models.

 

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How does Dart do this where others have either failed, or not even attempted? FINsix has managed to get Dart small by using a patented MIT technology called very high frequency (VHF) power conversion. Where a standard AC/DC power converter sucks the power out of your wall, regulating it to the right voltage, and pushing it into your devices, the VHF platform makes these converters much, much smaller.

 

FINsix is asking for just $79 for the Dart, with all 1,000 units sold out on Kickstarter at the time of writing. The $89 pledge has 471 backers, sitting at $89 with the scale going up to $10,000. Dart will begin shipping to Kickstarter backers in Q4 2014, after which we'll see it shown off at CES 2015.

Windows Phone 8.1 developer preview now available to download

Today Microsoft released the developer preview version of Windows 8.1 to the world and any user who is part of the Windows Phone developer program can download the update now. The developer preview version of Windows Phone 8.1 allows developers to get their first taste of Microsoft's Siri-like virtual assistant, Cortana.

 

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Users who register as a developer under the App Studio and create a new project will have access to the update, as well as those who registered under the Windows Phone Developer program and paid the $19 fee. Finally, any Windows Phone that is "developer unlocked," will be able to download Windows Phone 8.1. While Windows Phone 8.1 will bring a lot of new features to Windows Phone, Cortana is most certainly, the most anticipated.

 

Cortana is a virtual assistant that functions via voice commands just like Siri and Google Now, and is said to provide a more detailed and contextually relevant result based on a special "notebook" file Cortana keeps on your past queries. Microsoft hopes to draw in additional customers from its Halo fanbase as well thanks to the Cortana name given to the assistant.

T-Mobile ends overage fees, company urges competitors to do the same

T-Mobile confirmed today it will no longer charge subscribers a penalty if they go over their data plan limits, and anyone that goes over their data plan will just have speeds throttled.

 

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"Overage fees are flat out wrong," said John Legere, T-Mobile president and CEO in a press statement. "Charging overage fees is a greedy, predatory practice that needs to go. Starting in May for bills arriving in June- regardless of whether you're on Simple Choice, Simple Starter or an older plan, we're abolishing overages for good. Period."

 

T-Mobile also urges phone owners to sign a Change.org petition to pressure AT&T, Verizon Wireless and Sprint into dropping overage charges. Sprint welcomes customers to join its "Framily" plan, while AT&T and Verizon still hit customers with overage charges - which can easily rack up the phone bill even higher - and should be curious to see if they publicly respond.

HTC One M8 with plastic case rumored for launch next month

The HTC One M8 has been around for a while now and has proven to be one of the more popular smartphones HTC has launched in recent memory. The device launched late last month and prices have started to come down a bit on the smartphone. Amazon started offering a special with a new contract last week that allowed buyers to get the M8 for $150.

 

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For those who don't want a contract, buying a phone outright and unlocked is the way to go. The M8 is quite expensive if you go that route costing around $680 unlocked. That is a lot of money for a smartphone no matter how you cut it.

Continue reading 'HTC One M8 with plastic case rumored for launch next month' (full post)

Sprint WeGo lets parents know where kids are and stay in contact

Part of having kids is letting them become independent enough to go palces on their own. That is tough for a parent because they need to know where kids are at all times for safety reasons. Sprint has announced a new device that is specifically made to let parents keep up with kids and help kids feel safe.

 

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The device is called the Sprint WeGo and it is a small handheld mobile phone that supports texting and talk. WeGo offers kids limited SMS texting options to keep them from talking to people the parent doesn't know without permission. The device will alert parents via text or email if the phone exceeds a pre-set speed, if the panic alarm is pulled, or when SMS messages are received.

Continue reading 'Sprint WeGo lets parents know where kids are and stay in contact' (full post)

Apple to update its iPad, MacBooks, and release its iWatch this year

If a prediction from KGI Securities analyst, Ming Chi Kuo is anything to go by, we should expect Apple to begin its new product roll out starting toward the second half of Q3 2014.

 

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From this, we should expect quite the slew of new devices, including upgrades to iPad mini and iPad Air, two new iWatch smartwatches, two 'all-new design' iPhones - in 4.7- and 5.5-inch sizes, an upgrade to Apple TV, an all-new design ultra-slim MacBook coming in at 12 inches, and a new Retina-capable MacBook Pro.

 

As for the much-rumored iTV from Apple, this has reportedly been pushed back into 2015. The analyst also says that the previous rumors of the bigger, 'iPad Pro' 12.9-inch slate arriving, will not happen. Instead ,the new iPads will see Apple's A8 processor baked in, as well as the Touch ID fingerprint sensors.

Apple to release an all-new design iPhone this year, 5.5-inch model

We've heard so many rumors that Apple would release a new iPhone this year, while other rumors point to two new iPhones to be released from the company. Well, now we have KGI Securities analyst Ming Chi Kuo predicting that the company will release two 'all-new design' iPhones, coming in 4.7- and 5.5-inch variants.

 

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The 4.7-inch iPhone would be released sometime in Q3, where we should see it unveiled toward the end of September - but then there's the case of the second iPhone. This iPhone would be much bigger, sitting at 5.5 inches, and would be released toward the end of this year. There's not much known about this 'all-new design', but I'm expecting a big departure from what we're used to from the iPhone - and it's about damn time.

 

Considering we already had a "newly designed" from the ground up with the iPhone 5, what was all of that about when Apple did that? After five years of no changes to the iPhone, we had a big change. But now that Samsung has become an almost unstoppable threat for the company, Apple has been forced to go back to the drawing board it seems. Gone are the days of marketing videos pushing that you can use the iPhone with just one hand, and that any other phone that makes you do this is inferior.

Continue reading 'Apple to release an all-new design iPhone this year, 5.5-inch model' (full post)

Samsung's region locking on the Galaxy S5 is harsh

Samsung may have just launched its new Galaxy S5 in over 125 countries around the world, but if you want to use a Galaxy S5 from one country in another - region locking has been stamped into the new flagship smartphone.

 

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Samsung now requires a user to make a five-minute phone call on the Galaxy S5 with a local SIM card before the device can be used with SIM cards from other regions. A warning message on the European version of the Galaxy S5 reads: "This product should be activated with a SIM card issued from a mobile operator within Europe. (as defined EU/EEA, Switzerland and the following Non-EEA countries Albania, Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (F.Y.R.O.M), Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino, Serbia and Vatican City.)"

 

The South Korean electronics giant adds: "To use SIM cards from other regions, a cumulative call over five minutes must first be made with the SIM card from European operators". This isn't something that Samsung is doing to hurt its consumers, but it is trying to stop "grey" imports of its products, which will stop it from bleeding unnecessary lost profits around the world.

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