Posts Tagged party

Phandroid is Live at CES 2013!

The madness has officially begun! CES 2013 is underway and the first stop was CES unveiled at Mandelay Bay Convention Center. Reporting live this year (from left to right) are Edgar Cervantes, Kevin Krause, Rob Jackson, and Chris Chavez. Be sure to follow all of our exclusive CES 2013 coverage by visiting our Phandroid.com/guide/CES2013.

Our second stop was the Toshiba party on the tippy top 64th floor of the Mandelay Bay Hotel. Pretty swanky: here is the view from the top:

And right now we’re live at the NVIDIA Press Conference.

Wondering where the beloved Quentyn Kennemer is? He’s holding down the fort from home this year, making sure while we’re running around like robots with our fuses cut off, Phandroid is up to date with the breaking news you guys keep refreshing for.

We’ve already got a bunch of great swag and I’ll be collecting all of the swag I get from this year’s CES and giving it away in a swag bag contest. The contest will give those who follow our coverage a better shot, but you’re reading every word and watching every video anyways, right?

Cheers to an awesome year of tech at CES 2013 and we hope you enjoy our coverage!

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[CES 2013] Belkin Set To Bring WeMo To Android ‘Later This Year,’ Add Versatile Light Switch To WeMo Arsenal

wemo

Belkin, a little early to the CES party, has just dropped a couple of announcements regarding its WeMo brand. WeMo, for those who don’t know, is Belkin’s brand of electronic components (so far including a “switch” compatible with anything you could plug into a normal outlet, a baby monitor, and a motion sensor) meant to allow users to control their electronics from anywhere using their mobile device. Until now, however, WeMo has only been compatible with iOS devices.

In today’s announcement, Belkin says that’s about to change. WeMo is expected to bring Android compatibility “later this year,” which the company considers a “necessary step for the continued success and evolution of the WeMo brand.” An open beta test for Android users is set to start in February for users of Samsung’s Galaxy SIII and “other leading devices”.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

[CES 2013] Belkin Set To Bring WeMo To Android ‘Later This Year,’ Add Versatile Light Switch To WeMo Arsenal was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Sprint confirms own-branded prepaid service launching Jan 25

Android Central

Following some rumors of a new prepaid option, Sprint has confirmed today with FierceWireless that it will be launching the new service under its own brand name on January 25th. Cleverly named "Sprint As You Go" will offer unlimited talk, text and data for $70 per month on smartphones or $50 on featurephones, with no annual contract required. The prepaid service will not throttle data, unlike its subsidiaries Boost and Virgin which have set plans to throttle data usage after 2.5GB.

Also unlike its other prepaid carriers, Sprint will only be selling these new Sprint As You Go plans in its own retail stores rather than with third party partners. The carrier is positioning these plans as a higher-end option that offers users most of the same features of the postpaid plans, but without a contract.

Sprint will unfortunately be limiting these new plans to just four phones right now, two of which are smartphones. The LG Optimus Elite for $150 and Samsung Victory for $250 are the smartphone options, the latter having LTE data connectivity. It's understandable that the new plans should launch with a limited selection of lower end devices, but we surely hope that this opens up quickly. Sprint is going to have to do something special to compete with other prepaid GSM carriers that offer similar (or lower) prices and a vastly wider selection of devices.

Source: FierceWireless

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Samsung pushing update to fix Exynos security exploit

Exynos security fail

Samsung has started pushing out an update for the Exynos security issue for users in the UK. You might remember, there is a critical "bug" in the Exynos 4210 and 4412 powered Samsung phones including the world versions of the Galaxy S3 and other models. This bug allows any application to read the devices RAM, leading to all sorts of potential mischief. 

A third party patch was quickly made available by Supercurio that fixed the issues, and Samsung told us they would be addressing the situation as quickly as possible. For folks in the UK using a Galaxy S3, it appears that means right now. 

The update is 4.1.2 (build JZO54K) and was signed off on December 22. It's available as an over the air update, and is currently rolling out. Remember, you need to be running all stock software to accept and install any OTA updates, this one included.

There's also some speculation that this update will fix the seemingly random issue of hardware failure in the Galaxy S3 main boards, but I think it's a bit too early to suggest this. The fix to the Exynos exploit, however, is included in this update. No word on when to expect updates for other areas where folks are still in need of this critical patch, or other phones that need this update. 

Via: SamMobile

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How To Get Started Programming Android (Part 1): Introduction

Android apps

So you want to get started programming Android, eh? Welcome to the party then! Android is a great place to start your mobile development carrier simply because of how open the platform is and how easy it is to get started. Before you get started on this journey though, there are a few things you need to know.

Android is based off of Java, so it would be very helpful if you already knew the Java programming language, or at least some of it. If you are proficient in C++, C# or any other programming language, you should have no trouble trying to grasp Android. Now if you’re a young developer that wants to get into developing apps, it is highly recommended that you start learning a different programming language like Java. Sure, there are numerous books out there that will teach Android, but they all request that you know a little Java, proficiency in Java or they don’t say anything and just expect that you know Java (or some other programming language).

In my own experience, learning Java and then jumping into Android was a lot easier than just trying to dive into Android head first. It’s essentially building a foundation for yourself to later build upon that foundation, so to speak.

The other thing you need to know is that books are your friend. Sure, there are a few online resources, but I personally think its best to go out and purchase a book to teach yourself Android. It has all of the information you need right in one place and most of the books contain projects for you to do at the end of each chapter, which, as you know, helps retain a lot of knowledge.

Now, if you’re looking for an easier way to learn Java (so that you can easily learn Android) and have a little bit of money to spend, you might want to consider taking an online Java course with O’Reilly. If you’ve never thought that you couldn’t program before, going through a course with one of their instructors will get you programming in no time. The best part is that you can take the course at your own pace instead of having scheduled lecture times and etc. Another great part about taking Java courses through O’Reilly is that after your courses you can even get a certificate (albeit that does cost extra money)!

Regardless of all of that, you may not want to learn Java and just go head first into the world of Android. That’s fine too, but keep in mind that it’s a difficult road if you don’t have a foundation to build off of.

In the next tutorial, we’ll be listing out a few free resources that you can grab to start your journey programming Android which will also show you how to set up the Android development tools on your computer. Granted, we’ll be teaching you to set up the Android development tools in a later tutorial, but it doesn’t hurt to have a second reference, eh?

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Samsung Preparing a Fix For Galaxy S III Units With the Motherboard Issue

galaxy-s-3-innards

We’re pretty much in sync with what goes on around the tech sphere every day. There are numerous rumors coming through, speculations, device launches etc and on some occasions bad news too. One such bad news was with regards to the Samsung Galaxy S III which was reported to have a messy motherboard issue which apparently caused the device to stop working all of a sudden. While this issue could be easily disregarded as a hardware glitch, many felt that this had something to do with Samsung’s software. If you recall, Samsung smartphones have or had an exploit capable of allowing third party apps to remotely wipe data on the device, although this was something to do with Exynos chipsets and not the software. So it was obvious that fingers would be pointed on Samsung over the motherboard row too. And it now seems like the company has secretly acknowledged the motherboard bug and has already prepared an update with a patch to the bug. The info was accessed by a Dutch site named Tweakers.

This shows the commitment of Samsung to improve its products and provide optimum performance to its users. The issue apparently is only spotted on 16GB models of the Galaxy S III, so people with the 32GB GS3 can breathe a sigh of relief. Regardless, it’s a pretty annoying issue if you’re a GS3 user and it needed to be fixed. Samsung however was reportedly fixing affected devices by replacing the motherboard units for free, regardless of its root status, so that’s reassuring too. There haven’t been too many reports of Galaxy S III units instantaneously giving up on the user though, which gave us a feeling if this was an isolated case. But since Samsung has come out and acknowledged it, we can make out that it means something to them.

Let’s hope the fix rolls out sooner rather than later as it is the company’s highest selling smartphone as of now, and it would want to keep that going until the next major Galaxy flagship is announced in Q2, 2013.  There is no word on when the update will be rolled out, but Samsung has said that it only affects a limited number of 16GB models, so a minor firmware update should be on its way to the said devices. Of course, the South Korean manufacturer didn’t really make it clear as to which model numbers could be affected, so there’s some mystery over that.

Do you own a Galaxy S III? If yes, let us know if the motherboard glitch has worried you at all.

Source: Tweakers
Via: Talk Android

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Happy New Year from Android Community!

We wanted to take a quick moment and drop a hello to everyone this fine Tuesday afternoon. This Tuesday being the first of many fun Android days of 2013. It’s all over folks! 2012 is all over. We hope all of our friends, readers, and partners had an excellent, safe, and fun filled New Years Eve this year.

12 - 1

Happy New Year!!!! Android in 2013 will be extremely exciting. We’ve been taking the past few days to reflect on Android as a whole over the past year. That goes from smartphones, tablets, apps, rumors, predictions and everything else in between. While I’m sure many of you are nursing hangovers, cleaning up party favors, or hanging out with friends and family enjoying a nice lunch we wanted to ring in the new year with a few quick posts.

As mentioned above, we’ve taken the past few days to look back at everything 2012 had to offer in the world of Android. So here we wanted to share in one post a few of our round-ups for you all to enjoy. We’ll start with our Android in 2013: Expectations and Predictions. It’s a good read where we wrap up 2012 and discuss many of the things we’re hoping for, and expecting to see from Google and everyone else next year. Then we took a moment to reflect on Android the OS, and where it’s headed as 2013 hits full stride.

In 2012 we had over 80 Android device reviews, almost 100 hands-on videos, and plenty of app reviews in between. For a quick look at tons of links, coverage, and our wrap up check out our Android Community Reviews Rundown for 2012. We also focused on Android apps and took a look at the state of Android apps in 2012. Then last but not least, we couldn’t think of a better way to ring in the new year then to wrap up some of the top game changing Android devices of the year. We hope you enjoyed our coverage from 2012 and look forward to serving you here again throughout 2013.

The Android Community team will be enjoying the rest of the day to spend with our friends and family, and we hope you all do the same. Don’t worry though. We’ll be back strong tomorrow as we get ready for CES 2013 taking off starting Sunday. Get excited!

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New Year’s Eve Contest Extravaganza!

Android Central Stocking Stuffers

Win one of 11 remaining Google Play Gift Cards – or a bonus Nexus 4!

We had the best of intentions, really. Thirty-one days in December, 31 days of contests. But — surprise, surprise — holidays and birthdays and sick days caught up with us. We've already given away some 20 Google Play Gift Cards worth $10 each. And now, with but hours to go before we here in the U.S. tip over into 2013, we're finally going to wrap this contest.

Those of you who made it a little further in your math studies than we did might note that we've got 11 Gift Cards to go. And since tonight is the party night of the year, let's just get it all done in one last major contest, shall we? 

First, a quick reminder that all 31 winners are also in the running for a free 16GB Nexus 4, courtesy of us. If you've won one of the daily contests, or win one of the final 11 Gift Cards, you're automatically in the running. 

But let's sweeten the pot, shall we? We're going to give away a second Nexus 4, and we're going to do it in this final contest.

read more

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Falcon Pro 1.4 adds YouTube API integration, UI tweaks and more

One of our favorite third party Twitter apps — Falcon Pro — has been steadily improving since it hit the Google Play Store, and New Year’s Eve brings us yet another nice upgrade. The list of changes is quite big, and many of you will want to get your hands on all of them. So just what can we expect from version 1.4?

For starters, there is now YouTube API integration. This will allow you to watch YouTube videos within the client itself — no more needing to be kicked to the browser or the YouTube app to watch that silly 30 second clip your friend sent to you.

Other features include the ability to double tap on Tweets for more options, a logout button, the ability to hide the keyboard when doing a native retweet, the ability to report a tweet for spam, mute management settings, hashtag auto-fill for searching tweets, a slider mechanism for adjusting refresh rates, a tweaked design for the “More Actions” dialog, enhanced conversation view for private accounts and more.

Don’t forget that you can download the regular Falcon app if you want widgets to go along with this great Twitter experience. It’s a shame that Twitter is limiting API calls for third party developers because that unfortunate hindrance is the only thing hurting the otherwise quality experience that is Falcon Pro. Give it a shot if you already haven’t in the Google Play Store.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 receives CyanogenMod 10.1 nightliest

Some of the first CyanogenMod 10.1 nightlies for tablets are rolling out this morning, and it’s Samsung’s classic Galaxy Tab 10.1 line that is getting the love. The base Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, the WiFi variant, the Verizon variant, the T-Mobile variant and the revised Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v are all invited to this party.

It’s great to think that we’re close to 2013 and these 2011 devices are still receiving ample support from the great development community surrounding Android. CyanogenMod 10.1 features the absolute latest version of Jelly Bean in Android 4.2, and with that we’ll be getting new things like user accounts, a new settings toggle function, lock-screen widgets and more.

Most of the files are right around 156MB, though the 10.1v variant will be a little easier on bandwidth at about 121MB. Before you dive in and die in Jelly Bean heaven, be sure to remember that nightlies are not meant to be perfect. Often times than not they’re stable enough for most people to be daily drivers, but until these ROMs hit release candidate status nothing is guaranteed to work.

As such, the CyanogenMod team doesn’t like it when you report bugs at this stage, and it definitely doesn’t like it when you ask for an ETA on more stable versions. As long as you know that your device is your responsibility and that there is a chance you’ll run into some critical bugs then don’t hesitate in getting the download from the ROM’s official mirrors. Find it at the source link ahead.

[CyanogenMod Downloads, thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

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Android Overload: Apple vs Samsung, US Cellular Galaxy Note 2 gets Multi Window, extended battery for Galaxy S3 and more

A new year is right around the corner, so let’s welcome it with what could be the very last Android Overload of the year. Before you go out and party your guts out, make sure to check out what has been going on in the Android universe and give these articles a read.

  • ITC wants Samsung to post a bond of 88% of its U.S. smartphone sales due to Apple patent case [FOSS Patents]
  • Apple withdraws Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini from patent case [Reuters]
  • Samsung announces 1.1 million square foot R&D center for Silicon Valley [Android Community]
  • Samsung Galaxy S3 extended battery to be available January 5th [All About Samsung]
  • LG Optimus G receives Carbon Free certification [Unwired View]
  • US Cellular Galaxy Note 2 gets update with Multi Window support [US Cellular]
  • South Korea to ban poen and profanity on teenagers’ smartphones [Newsis]
  • Lenovo ThinkPad Helix swings through the FCC with AT&T-native LTE [Engadget]

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Tips on how to sell or dispose old electronics

recycle_electronicsIt’s Christmas season and many people are getting new gadgets  either as presents or through personal purchase. But one thing is for sure, most of us possess some older device that can now be considered obsolete or unwanted. Television sets, old computers, or tablets can be packaged as gifts, sold, donated or recycled. Whatever we do, we need to get rid of them smartly.

One important rule of thumb though: always ensure that any personally identifiable information are wiped off clean from the device.

Trading for maker/retailer credit

One of the most practical things to do with older gadgets is to trade them for credits as most of the major electronic stores have good trade-in offers that provides store credit for future purchases.

A good thing to do first is to check with the gadget maker to determine what are the prices being offered. For instance, Apple has a Reuse and Recycling program that users can avail so they get credits in Apple Store if they trade-in their old iPhones, iPads, iPods, and computers. Alternatively, wireless carriers like T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon has programs in place to buy back old phones in exchange for store credit.

Amazon also offers a similar service in their trade-in site. The site offers to buy back old Kindles and other electronic devices like video games, movies, and music. Users will be given an Amazon.com gift card that they can use to buy any product on Amazon’s main e-commerce site.

Established electronic retailers like Game Stop, Target, Radio Shack, and Best Buy also have their own trade-in programs in exchange for store credits. Customers can trade-in their tablets, computers, TVs, and other electronics.

 Selling for cash

The most convenient way to get of gadgets is selling them online. The money one gets depends on how much time and effort are dedicated for the venture though. One can easily fall to being caught up looking for the best price for an old smartphone or iPad, and before one realizes it he or she has already wasted a significant amount of vacation time wrangling to get that $50 price.

Doing transactions online in sites like Amazon, eBay, or Craigslist offer both pros and cons, though most of the time one usually gets good prices. However, signing up and creating a listing usually requires a good chunk of one’s holiday vacation time, not to mention dealing with flaky buyers.

Technology sells quickly but also depreciates just as fast so one can expect that a good old iPad 2 purchased a year earlier for $500 will more or less only sell at possibly around $300 now. One can get a good idea about how much an item costs online by looking at past eBay auctions for the same exact device.  Try searching for the name of the device then select “Completed Listings”  on the Show Only menu page, then click the auction tab on  top. Usually, the condition of the device commands the price. For instance, an unopened or unused Nexus 7 still in the box can fetch for up to $251, though the same device with a cracked screen only asks for $81.

Pricenomics.com is a handy site that provides a good picture of the average price of a certain device after being sold online for some time.

There are other more user friendly selling sites but do not offer higher prices for electronic devices. One such sites is Gazelle.com, which offers to buy back used Apple devices and other third party handsets. Old cellphones may still pitch in some cash by going to ReCellular. NextWorth takes old iPads and iPhones and other third party e-readers, cameras, gaming consoles, etc.

Buy back kiosks are blossoming all across the country too. EcoATM can check a device and provides a good price depending on the gadget’s condition. If a deal is reached, a device can be dropped in in exchange for cash on the spot.

 Donate for a change

Selling an old iPad or computer for a hundred bucks may not get one far but a local library or school can benefit much for having more working stations. There are countless ways to donate old devices, ranging from local charities to more established programs.

Dell and Goodwill are cooperating in coming up with their Reconnect program that takes donated PCs at some Goodwill sites. The official website of Reconnect program gives a wide range of items that can be accepted in select locations. The Salvation Army also takes older electronics and computers.
Some local community centers or schools also accept used gadgets. AmericanCellPhoneDrive.org will provide a good list of local and national organizations that takes old phone donations.

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Cell Phones for Soldiers, as well as the 911 Cell Phone Bank also accepts old cellphones to help in their many charitable projects.

Help the environment

Some older device may not even get a price at all, especially if they are all too damaged. Thrashing them won’t do any good, but recycling would. Many governments now offer options how to dispose electronics properly. Checking one’s local community center for drop off locations is a good idea. Recycling keeps unhealthy chemicals from being thrown in landfills and saves natural resources by minimizing mining and lowering the effects of pollution coming from factories. Batteries are ideally recycled separately.

Most electronics makers including Samsung Electronics, Apple Inc, and Sony also offer their own recycling programs for their old gadgets.

Best Buy will also recycle old phones for free. Staples and Office Depot may ask a small processing fee for recycling an old gadget.

source: CNN

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Kii Keyboard Beta Hits Google Play – Gesture Controls, Themes, and More

Third party keyboards – we can’t get enough of them. As we have seen from past examples, some are much better than others in terms of usability and user adoption. Although, we have seen some that are just downright ridiculous. Kii Keyboard on the other hand, is looking pretty good so far.  The keyboard brings [...]

Click the post title to continue through and join the conversation!

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POP Charger Right Back On Track After Apple Revises Its Policies

pop-charger

Apple’s policies have often been criticized for being too strict or unreasonable. One such policy was with regards to the Lightning Connector which is standard for all iOS devices after the formal announcement of the iPhone 5, fifth gen iPod Touch, iPad Mini and the fourth gen iPad. The switch to lightning practically meant that Apple was ditching the standard 30-pin dock connector which lasted for a few generations of iOS devices in favor of smaller and faster (as the name suggests) dock connector. Apple’s earlier policies restricted third party manufacturers from producing an accessory which makes use of both lightning and other connectors (even its own 30 pin dock connector). This was a nightmare for the third party accessory manufacturers as they had to stop production of their accessories which supports both iPhone and other devices to make a standalone Lightning only accessory.

And one such accessory maker is Edison Junior which had a cool new idea to make a charging hub named POP (Point of Power) which would allow users to simultaneously charge their iPhone, iPad, Android or BlackBerry device with retractable power cords coming from the unit. The company had set up a Kickstarter project to raise funds so as to take the project forward. But after Edison Junior learnt of Apple’s policies, the gang decided to refund the money to the investors/pledgers as it wasn’t possible to bring the product to the market. But since Apple changed its policies a few days ago, people began speculating if Edison Junior would go ahead with the project. And now, good news awaits for investors and fans as the folks at Edison Junior have finally decided to get the project going. What this means is that the company will not be refunding the $139,170 to its pledgers, but instead will put all its efforts into bringing this awesome product to the market.

This statement by the co-founder of the POP project Jamie Siminoff pretty much sums up the company’s emotions – “As you know on Thursday we sent you an update that because of Apple’s rules around Lightning we would be canceling POP. The story got, A LOT of news, and reactions, way more than we could have ever imagined. In fact it became such big news that 24 hours after we posted, Apple changed their guidelines for Lightning. It was an incredible turn of events for us. We never could have imagined that we would be able to change Apple’s rules. Based on Apple’s change we can make POP the way we had promised and the project is back on. We will not be processing refunds and are going full speed ahead to produce and deliver the product to you ASAP.”

We should expect to see the POP charger up and running in the markets in a few months. The unit has been in the planning stages before the iPhone 5 was even launched. So the new iPhone with its lightning connector and Apple’s policies came as a surprise for the company. The project has over a 1,000 pledgers who will now be relieved to know that their POP Charger will be on its way, soon. The POP Charger is sold in two different variants with one having an internal 26,000 mAh battery pack (POP Portable) and the other which comes with a standard AC adapter to plug into your power cord and charge devices that way (POP Station). Needless to say, the POP Portable is the most popular among users as it will come into great use even when the users are outdoors. Edison Junior’s original idea suggested that in the event of a new connector for the iPhone, they would ship POP Chargers with two standard 30-pin dock connectors and two new connectors. It is yet to be known if they are going ahead with this plan.

Source: Kickstarter
Via: Phone Arena

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Google’s Android team wishes everyone a Happy Holiday with this magical video

Sure I am a fan of Google and Android, but putting that aside, Google puts together some of the best promo videos. Today’s Happy Holidays video from team Android is another one to throw into the mix. This one is set at Google headquarters during a holiday party when one employee notices a lonely bugdroid. He sets up various Nexus devices around him showing a Christmas tree, a snowfall, and a fireplace, along with a little holiday music. All of this sets the stage for a magical ending. Hit the break to see it for yourself.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Google’s Android team wishes everyone a Happy Holiday with this magical video

Sure I am a fan of Google and Android, but putting that aside, Google puts together some of the best promo videos. Today’s Happy Holidays video from team Android is another one to throw into the mix. This one is set at Google headquarters during a holiday party when one employee notices a lonely bugdroid. He sets up various Nexus devices around him showing a Christmas tree, a snowfall, and a fireplace, along with a little holiday music. All of this sets the stage for a magical ending. Hit the break to see it for yourself.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Google’s Android team wishes everyone a Happy Holiday with this magical video

Sure I am a fan of Google and Android, but putting that aside, Google puts together some of the best promo videos. Today’s Happy Holidays video from team Android is another one to throw into the mix. This one is set at Google headquarters during a holiday party when one employee notices a lonely bugdroid. He sets up various Nexus devices around him showing a Christmas tree, a snowfall, and a fireplace, along with a little holiday music. All of this sets the stage for a magical ending. Hit the break to see it for yourself.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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No Comments

Google’s Android team wishes everyone a Happy Holiday with this magical video

Sure I am a fan of Google and Android, but putting that aside, Google puts together some of the best promo videos. Today’s Happy Holidays video from team Android is another one to throw into the mix. This one is set at Google headquarters during a holiday party when one employee notices a lonely bugdroid. He sets up various Nexus devices around him showing a Christmas tree, a snowfall, and a fireplace, along with a little holiday music. All of this sets the stage for a magical ending. Hit the break to see it for yourself.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Times Square Official Ball app updated to ring in 2013

Times Square Ball app

The official Times Square Ball app has just been updated to help you count down to 2013. Not everyone has a chance to be in Times Square for the new year, but at least with this app everyone can (assuming device compatibility) get part of the experience. It's not the smoothest or flashiest thing ever, but the app serves its purpose. You get a nice countdown to the new year, a livestream viewer of Times Square (you can watch the 2012 party currently) and you can even upload a photo to be shown on the big screen if you're lucky.

Sound interesting? You can grab a download for free at the Play Store link above. It probably doesn't do you much good over 10 days out from the party, but you'll have it installed and ready to go for New Years Eve. 

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Google Offers Some Android-Centric Holiday Cheer With ‘Happy Holidays’ Video, Digital Cards

image

If you aren’t quite feeling the holiday spirit yet, Google has decided to lend a hand with a few holiday-oriented offerings focused on our favorite green robot.

The official Nexus page on Google+ shared a few “Happy Holiday Cards” this evening, depicting Bugdroid hanging out with some arctic pals sitting by a fire, having a party, ice skating, and – of course – playing with Android-powered phones and tablets. To download the full-resolution cards or share with friends, just click through to the original post, linked below.

cardcard2card3cardv

Google also published a video titled “Happy Holidays from Android” which shows how a few tablets can brighten even the loneliest robot’s holiday.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Google Offers Some Android-Centric Holiday Cheer With ‘Happy Holidays’ Video, Digital Cards was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Samsung releases version 1.0 of the AllShare Framework SDK

Samsung has recently released the AllShare Framework SDK, which in theory, could help to add features to third-party apps. You see, while Samsung has the AllShare apps, up until this point, third party developers were unable to add AllShare support in their apps. Anyway, with the release of this SDK, developers will be able to create AllShare-capable apps.

samsung-allshare-540

The development and the apps that come as a result will be left up to the individual, however Samsung has said the the main features of the SDK include media sharing, screen sharing and control sharing. These are basically what the names imply. The media sharing will allow the user to share media stored on their device with another device. This sharing includes movies, music and images with other DLNA compatible devices.

The screen sharing will allow the user to share their display in real-time. The screen sharing will be shareable over any HDMI enabled TV using a dongle or Wi-Fi Display compatible device. Finally, the control sharing will be for things such as a remote.

Anyway, while there could be a wide variety of uses for these APIs, Samsung has managed to include the Smart TVs in all aspects. All that being said, with all the Samsung devices that have been sold over the recent months, it seems only logical to thing that there are more than a few developers that will be willing to create some useful AllShare-capable apps.

[via Samsung]

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Android team says Happy Holidays in touching video

We’ve been seeing plenty of companies releasing holiday-themed videos lately, including one particularly unsettling commercial from the likes of Samsung. Today it’s the Android team’s turn to show off a holiday video of their own, and rest assured, there isn’t any uncomfortable innuendo between Santa and Mrs. Claus to be found. Instead, the holiday video the Android team put out is rather touching, and may even make you shed a tear if you aren’t careful.

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The video is set in Google‘s offices during the Android team’s holiday party. Everyone is having a good time, save for one lonely Bugdroid, dressed in his holiday finest and staring longingly at a tiny Christmas tree set up in the office. When one Android developer notices the Bugdroid, he surrounds the lil’ guy with a winter wonderland using various Nexus devices, bringing a smile to his green (and adorable) face.

It’s a touching video that has an even more heartwarming ending which we won’t spoil here, but it also shows off a couple of items that are currently unavailable for purchase: docks for the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10. Perhaps the Android team decided to roll a teaser into this holiday video and we can expect an announcement shortly? One can only hope.

In the meantime, we suppose we’ll just have to settle with watching the video. Google has put out some pretty excellent videos in the past, and this one is no different. 2012 was a pretty great year for Android, so we’re definitely looking forward to what 2013 has in store. What did you think of the video?

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Google not-so-subtly reveals Nexus 10 dock in holiday video

Nexus 10 dock

That "Happy Holidays from Android" video was adorable, wasn't it? Well if you weren't taken back by the Android meeting up with all of his bugdroid friends for a holiday get-together, you may have noticed a Nexus 10 being put in a dock on a desk. Alongside a Nexus 4 and a couple of Nexus 7's, the biggest Nexus was dropped right into this dock you see above to show off a Photo Sphere.

The Nexus 7 dock has come up for pre-order through 3rd party retailers in the last couple days. Your guess is as good as ours when the Nexus 10 dock could make an official retail appearance.

Grab another look at the video after the break. The Nexus 10 fun starts around 1:00 in, and you can see it again at 1:14.

Thanks, rfmike!

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Android Music: DC’s hottest DJ remixes Nexus audio

What happens when you take the stock audio files from the latest Nexus devices, lock them in a room with one of Washington DC’s sickest DJs, and don’t let them out until they’ve got a bad ass beat worthy to be made Phandroid’s video intro music? This:

Nacey has long been a staple of the DC party scene, but in the past several years has risen to receive international acclaim. Born in Baltimore, Nacey relocated to the nation’s capital where he co-founded Nouveau Riche, known in the DMV for the throwing the award winning “Best Dance Night” in the region as seen in the City Paper. The Washington Post calls him “one of the District’s more prolific DJs”,  he’s performed at SXSW, and he’s been featured in countless publications including New York Magazine and RCRDLBL.

And now he brings you our very own “Android Music”.

When asked if he saw a parallel between the evolution of tech, the evolution in music (both consumption and creation), and the evolution of his art, Nacey had this to say:

Absolutely.  It’s a great thing that technology has empowered so many people to make and record music.  Most music producers have told me that the key to musical success is workflow, and I’ve found that to be pretty true as I get older.  The better you can understand and use the tools that technology offers, the better you are at translating your ideas into a final product and not getting held up.  That’s not to say that it’s necessary for creating something great, it just opens up a lot of possibilities.  Sound design is crazy these days!

He wasn’t familiar with all the stock sounds found on the Nexus so he took a lot of time experimenting. They definitely contrasted the Android sound with which he was most familiar – the famed droning “Droid” sound found in Verizon’s branding – so he ran with the Nexus vibe to create this dreamy beat. When pushed to give the track a name he said, “Touchscreen Dream…haha I don’t know!”

We don’t know either… but it kicks ass.

Nacey continues to evolve and rise in the music world and is definitely an artist to watch in 2013 and beyond. He’s currently touring with the indiepop band Misun, where he functions as both the producer and bass player. Their second EP “Sleep” will be released in January 2013 on T&A Records. He has remixes and production work has expanded internationally, producing album cuts for Vietnamese pop sensation Suboi and remixing the Finish band TV Off — both dropping this year. Nacey’s also currently recording his own full-length album, which will debut this year and provides more of the deeper soundscapes that set him apart as a remixer to watch in 2012.

And for your listening pleasure, an alternate Phandroid intro produced by Nacey that we’re calling Nexus Nights:

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Google’s Android team wishes everyone a Happy Holiday with this magical video

Sure I am a fan of Google and Android, but putting that aside, Google puts together some of the best promo videos. Today’s Happy Holidays video from team Android is another one to throw into the mix. This one is set at Google headquarters during a holiday party when one employee notices a lonely bugdroid. He sets up various Nexus devices around him showing a Christmas tree, a snowfall, and a fireplace, along with a little holiday music. All of this sets the stage for a magical ending. Hit the break to see it for yourself.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Kickstarter Project Falls Prey To Apple’s Policies?

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With the increasing number of smartphones, there are bound to be a lot of third party accessories for them. Especially for Apple products where accessories are sold for a premium price. And with the introduction of the new lightning connector, Apple moved away completely from the traditional 30 pin dock connector which was standard for the iPod Classic, iPod Touch, iPhones and iPads. This apparently brought faster transfer speeds and quicker charging capabilities, with the tradeoff being limited third party accessories at the time of the launch. But we expected that to pick up pace as the days went by and some Chinese accessory makers were quick to open up the lightning connector to replicate them and start selling affordable cables of their own.

In the U.S, a company named Junior Edison was formed so as to bring mobile charging to all these devices with a device called POP (Point of Power). This charging device came with retractable cords and is portable to conveniently carry it around. Powering the unit is a 26,000 mAh battery pack inside to charge almost every device you own with ease. The group also had a variant named POP Station planned which would allow users to plug into a nearest plug point and charge the device that way. Since this was a new and emerging group, they needed to raise funds to support the project, which is why they posted their idea on Kickstarter, eventually garnering lot of pledgers and raising funds of up to $139,170. However, it now seems like the gang at Junior Edison are preparing to refund the money to the pledgers/investors as the project has failed to take off. And this has nothing to do with the company itself, but the stringent rules put in place by Apple, apparently.

As you would expect, this new portable charging device decided to have the proprietary Apple lightning charging connector as one of its cords along with the usual USB and other charging cords to support other devices. But that’s where the problem began, it seems, as Apple wanted the charging unit to only include its lightning connector and not any other port (not even its own 30 pin accessory). So what this meant was that the gang at Junior Edison had to make this an iPhone only charging accessory, which frankly wouldn’t work as there are plenty of other devices out there which have a market for an accessory like this. Every third party accessory that supports Apple products needs prior reviewing and permission from Apple. So when Junior Edison asked for permission, Apple broke the news and the project was called off and the folks have decided to refund the money to the investors (over 1,000 of them). The company ruled out launching the POP with a standard 30-pin port and a lightning adapter as it would make no financial sense. This is because the adapters alone cost $25 (on wholesale).

Some feel this was all intentional and the developers just wanted to get some attention. Because when you look closely at the actual product, it comes with two female USB ports at the bottom. So even though there’s no retractable lightning port on board, I guess users with a lightning cable would be able to use the charging port just fine. The ability to not add a retractable lightning cable to the unit shouldn’t be enough reason to call of the entire project, which I guess makes all of this sound a little suspicious. Moreover, the CEO of Junior Edison, Jamie Siminoff has decided to refund the investors’ money on his own crowdfunding site – Christie Street. So was this just to garner attention from the investors on Kickstarter so as to make a name for himself? We hope not, because the idea shown here was really brilliant and we would have really liked the device seeing the light of the day. On the other hand, it makes us wonder about Apple’s policies where it doesn’t allow third party accessories to support both lightning and its own 30-pin connectors. For now, it is curtains on this project and investors should shortly get their money back.

Source: Kickstarter
Via: The Verge

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Dropbox Acquires Photo Sharing Service Snapjoy

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Dropbox has been very active since the past few days. It recently acquired music streaming service AudioGalaxy which led us to believe that it had something in store for the cloud music crowd. This made a lot of sense especially since Dropbox is already a big name in the cloud storage industry with a large user base to brag of. And now the company has acquired a photo sharing service called Snapjoy which is a great alternative to the likes of Picasa, Flickr etc. The service basically lets users view all their photos on different services and devices right under one app. It seems like Dropbox is looking towards a massive expansion, considering it has over 100 million users on its cloud storage service. Details are very scarce as of now, but we’ll know more about Dropbox’s plans in the coming days.

With Instagram and party currently ruling the photo sharing biz, it’s going to be hard for a new name to make an impact. But if Dropbox plays its cards right, we could see a new name emerge in the industry. There’s no clear information about the exact deal between the two services and how much money was involved, but the news has been confirmed by Snapjoy on its official blog. The app came to the fore in May 2011, and the creators should be pretty pumped up on being acquired already. The CEO of Snapjoy mentioned that the service had other interested buyers too. So it seems like Snapjoy had made quite a splash with potential buyers. The folks at Snapjoy assured existing users that their photos were absolutely safe, although new users weren’t able to sign up for the service ever since the acquisition was announced. It will now depend on Dropbox and Snapjoy to work in co-ordination to bring a neat little photo storage service to rival the likes of Flickr, Picasa and Instagram.

Dropbox is certainly very ambitious, and rightly so given its credentials in the field. It is currently leading the pack when it comes to cloud storage services which includes SkyDrive, Google Drive, and Apple’s iCloud among others. With Audio Galaxy under its belt as well, Dropbox has certainly announced itself as a major player in the cloud services arena and not just limiting itself to plain storage. Of course, Dropbox hasn’t made any of these plans public but these acquisitions couldn’t mean anything else.

Source: Snapjoy
Via: Tech Crunch

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Samsung releases new commercial for Galaxy Camera starring James Franco

Samsung has been working hard lately to release some clever commercials detailing their new products’ features, and today its Samsung’s new Galaxy Camera‘s turn to be in the limelight. The commercial was uploaded to Samsung’s Youtube page this morning and stars famous actor James Franco. In it, Mr Franco is cruising around a party and bumps into various scenarios where his Galaxy Camera’s features come in extremely handy. The use cases are actually pretty realistic and I could see why some of you photo buffs might want to pick one of these guys up. Samsung does a good job showing you the great features of the camera, while garnering a chuckle or two while you watch. Check out the video below.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Samsung releases new commercial for Galaxy Camera starring James Franco

Samsung has been working hard lately to release some clever commercials detailing their new products’ features, and today its Samsung’s new Galaxy Camera‘s turn to be in the limelight. The commercial was uploaded to Samsung’s Youtube page this morning and stars famous actor James Franco. In it, Mr Franco is cruising around a party and bumps into various scenarios where his Galaxy Camera’s features come in extremely handy. The use cases are actually pretty realistic and I could see why some of you photo buffs might want to pick one of these guys up. Samsung does a good job showing you the great features of the camera, while garnering a chuckle or two while you watch. Check out the video below.

Click here to view the embedded video.

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Samsung Releases New Commercial For Galaxy Camera Featuring James Franco

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Samsung has always done a great job with their commercials and has produced a great amount for the Galaxy S III. Now it’s the Galaxy Camera’s time to shine. The commercial was uploaded just this morning featuring famous actor James Franco. The commercial will give you a good laugh or two while Franco demonstrates how the Galaxy Camera works in real-life scenarios. In example, one scene shows a party guest falling in the water with his camera shorting it out and losing all of his photos. Franco then demonstrates that the Galaxy Camera backs all of your photos up on the Cloud so if a similar situation were to happen you would still have access to all of your photos. Samsung probably has their own app that does this, but since the Galaxy Camera is essentially a Galaxy S III strapped to the back of a camera, I would assume you could back-up your photos to your favorite cloud storage space like Drive or Dropbox.

Make sure to check out the commercial below!

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