Posts Tagged initiative

[Deal Alert] Marvel Puts Avengers Initiative On Sale For $0.99, Down From $4.99

unnamedAre you feeling a little too normal? Want to feel more super? For the low price of $0.99 you can now pick up Marvel’s Avengers Initiative from Google Play and get into that superhero mindset. This game is usually $4.99, so this is a substantial drop. It’s not a perfect game, but maybe this price is the sweet spot.

Avengers Initiative is an action fighting game made in the mold of Infinity Blade. You play as the Hulk and get to go up against a variety of villains, monsters, and miscellaneous bad guys. The download is hefty at 1.3GB, and device support is somewhat limited.

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[Deal Alert] Marvel Puts Avengers Initiative On Sale For $0.99, Down From $4.99 was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Second Avengers Initiative episode adds Captain America

The first episode of Avengers Initiative is still relatively young, but that isn’t stopping about Marvel Games from talking about what will be going down in episode two. Today we’re finding out that you’ll be able to play as Captain America in episode two, though unfortunately we don’t have a release date for the episode just yet. Still, the news that Captain America is featured in the next episode should be enough to get many players excited.

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Captain America’s segment of the story will have him tracking down a mole within S.H.I.E.L.D., so obviously you won’t be able to smash everything in sight like you did with the Hulk. We’re not sure how much gameplay will change between the Hulk and Captain America episodes, but there are enough differences between the two heroes that we can’t imagine both will play exactly the same.

As stated above, there’s no word on when episode two will be going live (though it should be available soon), but it does have a price. Marvel will be selling the next Avengers Initiative episode for 10,000 ISO-8, which is the in-game currency for the title. If you don’t want to take the time to earn that much in-game money, you can always buy that amount for $0.99 and unlock the new content immediately. It’s nice that Marvel is letting players pay with in-game currency, as it means that some players will be able to unlock Captain America’s new episode without ever paying any real money.

Those who are still playing Hulk’s episode are getting some goodies too, with everybody’s favorite big green superhero getting a handful of new costumes to use in-game. More episodes will follow the one that adds Captain America, with these upcoming episodes adding the likes of Iron Man and Thor to the game. It looks like Marvel will be supporting Avengers Initiative for a while yet, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, you can grab it from the Google Play Store for $4.99 [download link].

[via Pocketgamer]

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Needs More Training: Avengers Initiative Review

AvengersIconAfter a long time in development, Marvel (and their parent company Disney) have released Avengers Initiative to the Android masses. Coming with a $6.99 price tag on a limited number of devices, it adds to the growing list of Avengers-themed mobile games, even if only one of those heroes is available in this particular title.

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The Premise

Avengers Initiative puts you in the role of the Hulk, who has been tasked in bringing in a number of super-villains who have escaped from a high-tech prison in the Marvel Universe. The game plays almost exactly like the popular Ininity Blade series on iOs, where you’ll dodge, parry, and perform attacks in 1-on-1 duels.

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Needs More Training: Avengers Initiative Review was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Marvel’s Avengers Initiative hits Android and Tegra devices, we go hands-on

Marvel fans, get ready for some Hulk smash. Earlier today the brand new Avengers Initiative game went live on Google Play, and it’s quite amazing. Though this game is a blast and works with multiple high-powered Android smartphones and tablets, those with a Tegra 3 device will really enjoy all that Marvel has to offer. Below we have some screenshots and video so you know what to expect from this awesome $4.99 game.

This is the first episode of what surely will be more to come, and here you get to enjoy the awesome character The Hulk. I’m looking forward to this level of perfection with an IronMan game myself. Marvel promises multiple updates, and episode-like release plans for multiple characters. Oh and the graphics and gameplay are epic. Simply put, you play as the Hulk and do multiple swipes to destroy — everything!

What you see above is us enjoying this awesome new Android game on the NVIDIA Tegra 3 powered Transformer Prime. Obviously the game plays great with tons of powerful devices but users with a Prime or the Nexus 7 will really get to enjoy this game to another level. All the details are crisp, vibrant, and stunning with excellent textures and lighting. Watching your enemies damage grow as you Hulk smash him to pieces is quite fun.

As you can see from our video above the gameplay is dead simple and looks amazing on a mobile device. Marvel and NVIDIA have teamed up to make this an awesome experience for Tegra devices, and it clearly shows. Currently the brand new game is listed at $4.99 which Marvel says is an introductory price. While that might seem high you’ll be happy to know more content is coming soon. This game is set to be a gift that keeps on giving. They called it “episodic content” updates, which will be free. We can expect awesome playable characters like Thor, Captain America, and Iron Man sometime next year. So while the price is high, in the end it will be very much worth it for gamers and Avengers fans. Get it now from the Google Play Store link above or at the NVIDIA TegraZone.

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Marvel’s Avenger Initiative now available on Google Play for a promotional price of $5

Marvel’s Avenger Initiative

Although it landed on iOS first, Marvel’s Avenger Initiative has now arrived in the Google Play Store. Noted as being "the first installment of Marvel's biggest cross‐over mobile gaming event" you'll start the game off playing as Hulk and take on the task of hunting down the world's most notorious villains and send them back S.H.I.E.L.D. In other words, Hulk. Smash.

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Review: Avengers Initiative by Marvel Games [VIDEO]

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Good news for those looking to do a little gaming on their Androids this Thanksgiving. Marvel Games has finally released Avengers Initiative into the Google Play Store. The first episode in a series of updates that will eventually unlock Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor (not necessarily in that order) — Avengers Initiative puts you in the shoes of the Hulk (and his fancy new Jordans) as he battles enemies like Wendigo, Kronans, Skrulls, and the Abomination. Once locked up in a secret tower, these baddies have escaped and it’s up to the newly assembled Avengers headed by Nick Fury to round ‘em up.

Gameplay

Avengers Initiative plays eerily similar to titles like Infinity Blade or Blood & Glory. Think of AI as a boxing game on steroids (it’s all about the 1-0n-1 matches). That means players will have to execute well timed blocks, dodges and combos to take down the baddies. Attacks are performed by swiping in different directions on the screen, and you’ll need to perform combos to rack up the maximum amount of damage onto your opponent. A large portion of AI’s battles are all about that D — defense, that is — and involve either swiping the opposite direction of an enemies strike, dodging, or blocking to stun the opponent and leave them open for the counter attack. So much of the game involves reacting, that it was a little stressful for me (I’m used to playing a good offense in my video games) and tough for me to adapt. Here’s a quick list of available combos at Hulk’s disposal

Players wont be able to directly control Hulk as he walks around various landscapes and backdrops in search of evil doers. Instead, tapping on enemies just leisurely hanging out will result in Hulk strolling up to them and initiating a fight. Scattered through backgrounds are items used to power up Hulk and/or regain health, and can be tapped during the games many “walking cutscenes,” or right before a battle with an enemy. Similar to bonus levels in games like Street Fighter (where you have to pummel a car), Hulk can initiate quick battles by tapping on crystal pillars made of ISO-8′s (Avengers Initiative’s form of currency). From there players will be given a set amount of time to wallop the crustal pillar and tap on the ISO-8′s that come popping out.

There are some RPG-like elements to Avenger’s Initiative and defeating opponents results in XP (experience points). You can gain bonus XP by fighting well during a battle and by performing finishing moves (almost like a mini game in themselves). Once leveled up, players can upgrade Hulk’s total health points, stamina (used for blocking), Rage (used for power moves), and damage (self explanatory). It’s pretty much up to the player and his/her’s own fighting style to decide where the points will be distributed. Once you reach higher levels, Hulk gains access to new “Powers” (supermoves), so you can see how it definitely behooves players to do well in battle.

Hulk can also soup up his stats by the use of Augments (crystals of varying levels of power that can be equipped to a slot), and through snazzy alternate costumes. You can either work hard, perform well, and earn enough ISO-8′s to purchase these costumes, or they can also be bought with real life monies through in-app purchases — not by any means necessary, just for those that don’t want to work at powering up their character the hard way.

Graphics

Graphically, the game looks great. Visuals look crisp on a tiny 720p display, and character models are well detailed featuring a variety of lighting effects and normal mapping (the Skrulls even have individual teeth!). Both the main character and enemies are well animated and don’t have the typical stiff movement plaguing titles of less-funded games in the Play Store. Apparently, there’s some extra visual effects that are enabled on Tegra 3 devices. Things like varying levels of body damage that are represented on enemies, flowing clothing, and even ISO-8 effects. Since I couldn’t actually test the game on my ASUS Transformer Pad Tegra 3 tablet (there’s only a handful of supported devices at launch), I wont be reporting on those aspects at all. There is, however, a nice little comparison shot showing the battle damage portion of the Tegra 3 effects (see below). The only thing I didn’t like about the visuals was the lack of detail in the environments. Textures were often flat and blurry, but this could have something to do with me playing the game on a non-Tegra device.

Verdict

Avengers Initiative is a fun title that scores high marks in almost every area. Perfect for quick gaming sessions on your smartphone or tablet, the included RPG elements give players something to work towards while keeping things fresh. The in-app purchases are done the right way, and the prospect of even more Marvel super heroes and enemies to be revealed in later updates ensures you’ll be coming back for more. Marvel Games did a slammin’ job with this one. You can download Avengers Initiative right now from the Google Play Store for the introductory price of $5. Still not convinced? Check out my video below for the first 12 minutes of gameplay.

[Google Play Link]


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Avengers Initiative from Marvel ready to land on Android devices

If you have ever muttered to yourself, “HULK SMASH!” Marvel may have a new game right up your alley. Demonstrating the influence of smartphones and tablets, Marvel is releasing Avengers Initiative as a title specifically developed for touchscreen devices. This is the first of four planned titles in the series, this one giving players the opportunity to play as the Hulk.

The back story involves several monsters and criminals breaking free from a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility. The Hulk is recruited to track down as many of the bad guys as he can while the rest of the Avengers are assembled. Marvel indicates the combat system is completely gesture based with high definition visuals. Players can customize their Hulk character and access on-line features like live events and new character reveals. Marvel has created a new service called Marvel XP that will let players track progress, receive achievement rewards, unlock badges and other character content. The system is also supposed to work across multiple games like the Avengers Alliance game on Facebook.

Avengers Initiative requires Android 4.0 or better and Marvel lists about 18 devices the title will work on. If you have a Tegra powered device, Marvel has included some TegraZone enhancements like better character textures, realistic clothing, life-like environments, and Iso-8 effects.

Avengers Initiative is available in the Google Play store using one of the links below for $6.99. Who is ready to show they are the strongest there is?

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Click here to view the embedded video.

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The First Avengers Initiative Game Finally Goes Live On The Play Store, Launching With $5 Promo Price Tag

avengerstinyIt’s been a couple months in coming, but the first in an episodic series of Avengers games is live on the Play Store now. In case you’ve forgotten, this edition features the Hulk, leading the effort to round up a number of supervillains that escaped during a breakout of The Vault. To celebrate the launch, Marvel and NVIDIA are offering the game for a special promo price of $4.99 (normally $6.99).

Owners of Tegra 3 devices will notice some extra effects and battle damage, but the chipset is not strictly required. However, there is a pretty sparse collection of supported devices.

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The First Avengers Initiative Game Finally Goes Live On The Play Store, Launching With $5 Promo Price Tag was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Marvel’s Avenger Initiative Now Live on Google Play For $5 Promotional Price

Marvel fans, you can now go get your Hulk on. Moments ago, the Avengers Initiative went live on Google Play for a special promotional price of $4.99. The first episode of this epic masterpiece is played through with the character Hulk, as you track down and battle the world’s most powerful super villains like Abomination and The Kronan.  [...]

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Marvel (Sort Of) Releases ‘Avengers Initiative,’ The First In A Series Of Avengers-Themed Gaming Content

avengersinitiativeIt’s difficult to put out a $1.5 billion movie and not expect a few major product tie-ins. Marvel, today, “released” (we’ll get to that in a bit) a new game for Android called “Avengers Initiative.” This $7 app stars the Hulk, as the green loose cannon battles some of his most notorious villains, including Wendigo, the Abomination, and even the infamous Skrulls. The game will only be available for select Android devices to start with.

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Curiously, though, despite the game being available on the Play Store, it doesn’t seem to be active. There is a list of devices that will be supported (including the HTC One X, Galaxy S III, Nexus 7, and many other flagship phones and tablets), however it can’t actually be installed just yet.

Official Android Police t-shirts are now on sale, with over 25 designs to call yours.

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Marvel (Sort Of) Releases ‘Avengers Initiative,’ The First In A Series Of Avengers-Themed Gaming Content was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Humble Bumble: Buy Five Awesome Android Games For Anything You Wish to Pay

Humble Bumble is an awesome initiative put forward to play great cross-platform games by paying whatever you wish to pay, no matter how small is the amount. Not only that, but the amount you pay is shared between charity, developers and the Humble Bumble team.

Nearly, 74780 bundles have been sold so far and with the concept becoming popular, the numbers are bound to increase sooner than later.

Humble Bumble offers games which are compatible with all platforms- Android, Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. The site offers an awesome combination of Five Popular Android Games, which currently are: Fieldrunners, BIT.TRIP BEAT, SpaceChem, Uplink and Spirits. However to avail the fifth game- Spirits, you would need to pay more than average of $6.12, which I think is a great deal. The price of all these games combined rounds up to 52$.  Also considering the fact that Space Chem alone costs 6$, you simply cannot ask for a better bargain.

You can even purchase these games for $1, $2 or no matter what you wish to pay. You can also choose how you wish to split the revenue between Developers, Charity and Humble Bumble guys, who are providing you such an amazing package.

If you pay at least $1, you can also avail the Steam key and DRM-free downloads. The key that you buy can be used to play games on Steam on Windows and Mac platforms. Besides, Humble Bumble is widely praised for its DRM-free applications which are capable of running on almost all platforms.

Besides buying amazing games at nearly a throw-away price, you also get to do some charity. Humble Bumble has tied up with various charity foundations like the Child’s Play Charity, or the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

This according to us is an excellent initiative put forward to encourage people to buy apps. People would be happier to know that they are getting apps for almost nothing (or anything) and even happier to know that the money they’re paying is going for a more noble cause.

Head over to Humble Bumble website now to catch this amazing offer.

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Android 4.1 Jelly Bean officially announced at Google IO

Hugo Barra director of product management her at Google has just jumped on stage here at Google IO for their day one keynote. Right off the bat talking about momentum, numbers, and of course the much rumored Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

No more waiting or rumors. Although we knew it was coming with the Jelly Bean statue arriving yesterday at Google’s HQ, but this makes it truly official. Today they have tons to talk about with Jelly Bean. The first thing was project butter. This was their initiative to make Android 4.1 smooth as “butter.”

They’ve added triple buffering, improved touch responsiveness and tons of other things with project butter. Looks like I’ll need to go buy some butter popcorn flavored Jelly Belly’s real fast. We’ll continue to update as the news drops so stay tuned.


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Google Trademarks Showy: The Downloadable Remote Control Software for Any Device

At the end of February Google registered the domain GoogleShowy.com which really doesn’t say much in regards of what this site would host. It was overshadowed by the fact that Google went on a domain buying spree involving their Google Play Initiative. Well Google’s latest move should shed some light on that as they recently filed a trademark application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in regards to this “Showy.” The trademark application (Serial Number: 85570895) that was submitted on March 15th has some nifty details under the goods and services portion. Here’s what it says:

“Downloadable software which allows users to use their computer, tablet device, or mobile phone as a remote control to operate video display devices and televisions; and downloadable software which allows users to remotely control the content on internet-connected digital signage.”

Could this software be related to the Google patent that was filed back in February involving the use of your Android phone or voice commands to control your Google TV? Probably. However as Google hasn’t made mention or given any details regarding Showy we will have to wait and see what the future holds for this domain. As of right now if you go to the site nothing comes up. Keep it locked here and we’ll update you as soon as we know more information on the development of Google’s Showy. Stay tuned!

 

source: ustpo.gov
via: fusible

 


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Marvel shows off new line of Infinite augmented reality comics

By all accounts, traditional comic book stores are doing even worse than bookstores in the digital age ,which is to say, not very well at all. But a new initiative by comic giant Marvel aims to breathe some life into retail comics via the very medium that’s threatening them. Their new Marvel Infinite Comics line brings a new dimension (literally) to some of the best-known superheroes in the world, via the now-familiar method of augmented reality. Marvel showed off the new comics with launch partner Aurasma as SXSW in Austin, Texas.

Marvel explained the initiative as sort of DVD extras for individual comic books. While 3D animations and trailers can only be activated in the real world with the upcoming Android and iOS app, digital buyers will still be able to access all the extra content in a separate manner. The example demonstrated for panel attendees in Austin was a digital Iron Man that popped out of a comic book cover and did some of his signature moves “live” on camera. Observe:

Readers will be able to use the app to either view animated panels in a digital reader or watch it through the AR interface via their phone or tablet’s camera. Marvel didn’t give specifics on the app or comics’ availability, though they did say that the Infinity extras would be included on the highly anticipated Avengers vs. X-Men series due later this year. If you’re not a comic book person, imagine it as the Super Bowl of superheroes, at least on the Marvel side of things.

[via TechCrunch]


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Lenovo Launches Initiative To Teach Android App Building In High School

NC Governor Bev Perdue pictured with Tom Looney VP/GM of Lenovo at announcement of Lenovo's Android App building curriculum at Apex High photo courtesy of Lenovo

20 somethings and 30 somethings in this day in age are already looking towards the days when kids won’t remember not having internet. Can you imagine a day when Android Application Engineer is a full blown career field? Well that day is getting closer and Lenovo in partnership with the National Academy Foundation are spearheading that effort.

According to the IDC Lenovo is the largest provider of laptops and desktops to education in the world. They’ve shipped over 3.6 million units to educational institutions. In case you were wondering Apple is ranked 4th in providing computers for education.  With that kind of commitment to education its no wonder that Lenovo is spearheading a program like this.

Five schools that are part of NAF’s network of career academies are piloting a new curriculum based on developing Android app development. The program is geared towards student’s in NAF’s STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

More after the break
One of the five schools launching the program is Apex High School’s Academy of Information Technology in Apex NC. Lenovo (US HQ is in Raleigh NC) alongside NC Governor Bev Perdue announced the program.

“High – tech skills are critical for North Carolina’s pipeline of future workers,” said Gov. Perdue. “Unique partnerships like this one not only give high school students real-world, real-time learning opportunities, but they align with the broader goals of business, education and government to create North Carolina’s next generation of professional leaders.”

“Our schools are strong because we have great partnerships with business and industry,” said Anthony J. Tata, superintendent of the Wake County Public School System. “This unique program gives our students practical experience with innovative technology at a time when they’re making decisions about their future careers. We’re creating the next generation of entrepreneurs.”

There are roughly 40 kids at each of the five schools that will participate in the Android app building program. According to Lenovo’s Mike Schmedlen in an interview with thedroidguy today, the program will consist of about 20% of in classroom course work and the other 80% with the kids getting their hands dirty in a lab setting.

Schmedlen and Lenovo will be following the program closely through the rest of this academic year at each of the five schools. Lenovo is committed to keeping the kids in the program totally up to date meaning that Ice Cream Sandwich will definitely be part of the curriculum.  In addition to building Android applications the students will also learn about developing business plans, testing apps and bringing them to market.

As the course evolves The NAF and Lenovo will decide how many schools to bring the curriculum too next year. Schmedlen said that it could go into as many as 100 schools in the 2012-2013 school year.

“The partnership between NAF and Lenovo is a real example of how business and education can play a pivotal role in changing high school education to ensure college and career success.  We are pleased to be working with such innovative thinkers to inspire and equip tomorrow’s leaders,” said JD Hoye, president of the National Academy Foundation.

Many colleges and universities across the country have started to implement courses on mobile apps and mobile development. This is the first high school level course for Android app development.

 

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Google GoMo thinks your site isn’t mobile enough, wants you to change

Do mobile sites matter? Google thinks they do. In fact, the company has introduced GoMo, a “Google Initiative” aimed at bringing you over to its side. The site contains information driving this point home, resources to help you go mobile and an emulator to let you know how your site looks on mobile devices, so you can either GoMo or go home.

Google GoMo thinks your site isn’t mobile enough, wants you to change originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 01 Nov 2011 11:22:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Sprint Partners with SensorLogic in M2M Initiative

SensorLogic, a provider of cloud-based platforms for machine-to-machine (M2M) application development, on Tuesday announced that they are teaming up with Sprint, to assist enterprise customers to help fast-track M2M initiatives.

The partnership of the two companies is expected to give enterprise customers better ways to produce and deploy M2M applications and managed services. The association allows the two companies to promote both of their offerings in hope of meeting the needs of the growing market for M2M services. Read More…

Sprint Partners with SensorLogic in M2M Initiative


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Rumor: Verizon is Working on a “DROID Loyalty” Program

We just caught wind of a new initiative that Verizon is spearheading that they are internally referring to as the “DROID Loyalty Program.”  While details are scarce, we understand that it has to do with the retention of current Android customers.  That could mean a variety of things, but one would assume that with the [...]

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Saygus Vphone receives Verizon certification

Unicorns DO exist!

Remember the Vphone? Revealed way back in 2009, Saygus promised that the Vphone would be the first consumer phone to pass Verizon’s Open Device Initiative (ODI) certification, promising revolutionary features such as video calling over 3G, Remote backup and restore for data, and up to a three year warranty.  The phone won several design awards at CES, and the company promised that the device would be out sometime during 2010.  Then, it disappeared.  That is, until today.

Sascha Segan, over at PC Magazine, broke the news to day that the Saygus Vphone finally received certification through Verizon’s Open Network Initiative and would start selling the handset "soon." The phone’s specifications include:

  • 3.5" 800×480 screen
  • ‘Best in class’ slide-out keyboard
  • 806Mhz processor
  • 256MB SDRAM
  • 512MB Flash
  • "Android OS" – Though the version number isn’t listed in this release, the last known version it ran was 2.2 aka Froyo.
  • 5MP rear camera with VGA front-facing camera
  • USB host port
  • USB modem capable

In a market dominated by 4"+ black slabs and dual-core processors, the Vphone won’t win any awards in the spec race.  It’s important to note that this is the first (and currently only) android device to receive Verizon’s ODI certification.  What this means is that while the device itself will run on Verizon’s network, it won’t be officially "supported" by them, meaning it should ship without CityID, Vcast, and the other applications Verizon puts on their other devices. This isn’t a Nexus device, but it’s the closest thing Verizon users have seen to a stock Android device since the original Droid.

On Monday, we wake up to see that Google is buying Motorola, and on Tuesday we discover that the Vphone will actually see the light of day.  What will we wake up to tomorrow?

Source: PC Mag.  More: Verizon, Saygus


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LightSquared creates rural America intitiative, promises to be more help than hindrance

With GPS interference issues now resolved, LightSquared’s going back to the farm to reassure rural America it means no harm. The wholesale-only 4G LTE service that already signed up a plethora of partners is turning to Sen. Byron Dorgan and Reps. George Nethercutt and Charlie Stenholm to oversee its newly-created Empower Rural America Initiative. The plan calls for oversight of the service’s bucolic deployment, promising its filtering tech will keep GPS-dependent precision agriculture on-point and pesticides away from your country home. Also under the proposed guidelines are plans to assist emergency first responders with network access in the event existing communication systems get knocked out. It’s a comforting pat on the rustic back that should shore up “broadband adoption gap” issues currently plaguing underserved areas. But while it may look like the farmer and the technologist can be friends, we have a sneaking suspicion there are more self-serving motivations at play here. Hit the break for LightSquared’s pastorally empowering PR.

Continue reading LightSquared creates rural America intitiative, promises to be more help than hindrance

LightSquared creates rural America intitiative, promises to be more help than hindrance originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 07 Jul 2011 22:07:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Mozilla Releases Firefox 5 For Android With Do Not Track

Although Mozilla’s Firefox was a little late to the Android browser game, lately they’ve been on top of things because of their new rapid development cycle initiative, promising quicker releases with important and enriching features. According to Mozilla’s website the latest version of their mobile browser was just released across multiple platforms. This version includes [...]

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PhanCast 36: IO Recap, Xperia Play, Droid X2, Apps Initiative [LIVE at 7PM Eastern]

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Yet again we’ve spent some time apart, but we’re re-united to talk Android in PhanCast 36 live at 7PM Eastern. That’s 20 minutes or so from the time of this post for all the mathematicians out there. On tap tonight is a Google IO Recap, the Xperia Play and Droid X2 for Verizon, and an app discussion that will serve as a prelude to next week’s big app show.

Tune in live at 7PM Eastern over at BlogTalkRadio or via the player below (old episodes will stream while off-air).


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HTC Thunderbolt Wireless Charger Set to Launch Soon With FCC Approval

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The HTC Thunderbolt is notorious for horrible battery life so it’s no surprise that Verizon wants to offer robust charging options for users. As part of their new wireless charging initiative, they’ve been providing wireless charging backs for several new phones, including the Thunderbolt, the LG Revolution and the HTC Droid Incredible 2 Unfortunately, Verizon has yet to bring these to market. Today’s FCC approval means we’re definitely close, though, and you should be able to plop your phone right down on one of those mats and get that horrible battery charged up in no time. [via Wireless Goodness]


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Android@Home Initiative Looks to Give You Total Control of Your Home via Android

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While much of Google’s I/O keynote presentation focused on the here and now of Android with news on Ice Cream Sandwich, an update to Honeycomb, and the unveiling of Google Music and Movies, a portion of the presentation was dedicated to more forward-looking projects the Android Team is working on. One such initiative is Android@Home, which seeks to give you total control over your home using Android as the control hub.

Functions could be as simple as turning lights on and off from your smartphone or tablet, but could extend to everything from controlling heating and cooling to setting a security system. The possibilities seem endless, and Google likes it that way.

One function demonstrated was audio streaming via a central “alien” looking hub to a set of speakers. This is by no means a new technology, but demonstrates how functions like this can be built on and into the Android OS.

Android@Home is still a pretty forward looking initiative, though partnerships with companies such as LightingScience will see some consumer products such as lighting with Android support released near the end of the year. Google is inviting developers to have a go at the new framework in hopes of eventually turning the home into one giant Android device.


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Android for Good donates old phones to developing world projects

Google usually hands out free devices to the developers that attend its workshops, but at Google I/O next month it’ll be asking them for phones, not giving them away. The search company is starting “Android for Good“, collecting unlocked and working Android handsets from those that no longer need them, and then donating them to projects all over the world.

Those projects include various data tracking and monitoring initiatives, which use the Android phones to input and crunch data:

“A small team collected Android devices from Googlers around the world and organized their donation to groups including Grameem’s AppLab Community Knowledge Worker Initiative in Uganda, Save the Elephants in Kenya, V-Day in the Democratic Republic of Congo,VillageReach in Mozambique, VetAid in Tanzania & Kenya, and UNHCR in Central Africa.” Zi Wang, Google

If you’re headed to Google I/O 2011 and have a spare device – that’s unlocked and fully-functional – then you can drop it off at the Android for Good booth on the third floor of Moscone Center. Google is also apparently looking into how it could extend the scheme to cover people not in the US and not attending a developer event.

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Google Spreading NFC Marketing Tools to More Cities

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Google’s continuing their NFC push here in the United States. If you didn’t know, they partnered up with businesses in Portland to put NFC stickers in their windows which allows customers to get more information on the store or to grab a deal going on simply by tapping their phone against it. The program seems to be successful as they’re now expanding to 4 more cities. Those include Austin, Texas; Madison, Wisconsin; Charlotte, North Carolina and Las Vegas, Nevada. Google’s not slowing down with their initiative so expect to see more cities added over the course of the year. [via NFC World]


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