Posts Tagged progress

Android usage report has Jelly Bean at over 10% with Cupcake finally gone

The latest Android usage numbers are in and this time around marks the first we are seeing Jelly Bean with more than a 10 percent share. Granted, it is just barely above the 10 percent mark, but at least we are seeing forward progress in terms of the latest Android release. According to the usage numbers coming from Google, Jelly Bean now accounts for 10.2 percent.

android-jelly-bean-logo

That of course does break down further. Android 4.1 has 9 percent with 4.2 picking up the remaining 1.2 percent. And just for comparison sake, Jelly Bean usage totaled 6.7 percent in the previous month. Otherwise, much of the numbers are doing what we would expect. Though, this latest usage report does mark the time when Gingerbread dropped below 50 percent.

In fact, Gingerbread usage went from 50.8 percent in December to 47.6 percent in January. Granted, that is not much below the 50 percent mark, but progress is being made and we would expect to see that continue to drop as those device owners reach their two-year agreement length and begin to upgrade. Otherwise, Ice Cream Sandwich saw a small growth this month, going from 27.5 percent in December up to 29.1 percent in the January report. We would expect to see Ice Cream Sandwich continue to grow, at least in the short term.

android-usage-january-2013

Honeycomb as well as Froyo and Eclair continue to drop off and this latest report also has one other nice little tidbit — there was no mention of Android 1.5 Cupcake, which dropped from 0.1 percent on the December report. Finally, as always, these numbers are released direct from Google and based on data collected during a 14-day period, which in this case ended on January 3, 2013. The data is collected from devices accessing Google Play.

[via Google]

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Google TV Custom Recovery sneak peak video released

It looks like the folks over at GTV Hacker have been busy lately. In fact, they have recently released a teaser video for their Google TV Custom Recovery software. And just to give a quick once over here, the recovery software will allow users to do things such as install an update from USB, perform a factory reset, check the system information and reboot the system.

Google-TV-Logo

This particular group has been around for sometime now and have apparently been making some decent progress over the years. This team is looking to create a tool that will allow Google TV users to “allow for custom kernels to be run on most of the newest generation of Google TV devices.”

Some of the notable breakthroughs came back in February of 2012 when they released a customized and open Google TV kernel for Sony devices. They have also done good work with the Boxee OS. They discovered and then released a pair of exploits which allowed Boxee users to install packages such as Boxee+.

Bringing this back to the present day though, the GTV Hacker team recently offered up a video demo of the Google TV Custom Recovery software running on a Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV device. A few notes here though, at the present time there are still some limitations and holdbacks. The crew noted that they “are trying to keep most of the specifics private in order to avoid an update that could patch the exploit before the community gets to utilize it.” And lastly, at this time the software is said to be in beta and not having any release date.

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Android 4.0+ now on 40% of all Android devices

Well, folks, it looks like Gingerbread is finally starting to make a steady descent into the ranks of the obsolete. Well… there’s still a long way to go, but progress is progress! The percentage of Android devices on Gingerbread has finally dipped below 50%. Only about 47.4% of devices remain on the increasingly archaic platform, and while that’s still a heft number considering the hundreds of millions of devices floating about, we have to acknowledge that progress is progress.

Froyo, Donut and Eclair all took hits in this two week period ending January 3rd, but it wasn’t enough to write home about. Cupcake has been exiled from the list altogether, and while it provided some good memories back in the days when the HTC Magic and Dream were the only Android devices available I can’t say I’ll miss it at all.

The future looks bright, though, as the most modern versions of Android — those running 4.0 and higher — make up nearly 40% of the pie. Specifically, Ice Cream Sandwich is now on 29.1% of all devices, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is on 9% of all devices, and Android 4.2 is on 1.2% of all devices. It’s tough to realize that Android 4.1 never hit double digits before Android 4.2 launched, but hopefully this’ll play out like the quick jumps between Android 2.3 to 2.3.3, and from Android 2.0.1 to Android 2.1 did.

Regardless, most are happy to finally be on the new and improved Holo UI and take advantage of all the 4.0+ exclusive apps that have been sprinkled throughout the Google Play Store as of late. Unless Google slows down to a yearly update schedule then the problem of fragmentation will never die (even that isn’t certain), and that’s just something we’re going to have to learn to live with, folks. Take a look at the breakdown above.

[via Android Developers]

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Featured Android Game Review: Ant Raid [Arcade & Action]

HeroCraft has a new one out and it’s a dandy. It’s called Ant Raid and it’s basically a battle in the garden. You play the ants and you need to take out armies of bees, snails, and other insects. This game was already a hit on iOS devices, but now it’s available in the Google Play Store for your enjoyment. The initial levels are quite easy, but it gets difficult in a hurry.

Each level is in a different surrounding and you’re given a certain number of ants. As other insects approach, your job is to send some or all of the ants to take out each enemy. You do this by tapping on the screen and a circle appears. As you hold your finger the circle will get larger. The ants that are within that circle will be the ones that attack. Now you just tap where you want to send them. Sounds easy right? Well at first it is, but then things get a little more interesting in that you will have to use some of your leftover ants to rescue other ants. You will also need to figure out how many ants you really need to take out a particular enemy in order to conserve your leftovers for the next enemy. Each insect is different, some are fast, and others are bigger and/or stronger.

As you progress, you will also get other powers like the ability to take on colors from fallen enemies like blue and red. Blue will make you invulnerable and red will make you faster. You will also be able to use lightning to squash insects by simply taping your finger on them. Sounds easy, but you will get penalized if you miss them.

You can advance to the next level by surviving the enemies, which will yield you a minimum of one star. The better you do at accomplishing the task the more stars you will get. You can get up to three stars, but what’s cool is that you can see if you’re in the running for the three stars. At the beginning of each round, you are given three stars (shown at the top left), but as you progress, the stars will be removed if you’re not playing up to par (or shall I say above par). If the story mode isn’t your thing, you can play the survival mode, but you will have to complete chapter 1 in the story mode (15 levels) in order to unlock it. In survival mode you simply play until your colony is destroyed, which makes it more arcade style.

Right now Herocraft has Ant Raid on sale for a a launch price of 99-cents, so grab it now and give it a shot. As always, let me know what you think. Check out the video trailer and download links below.

Features

  • GORGEOUS GRAPHICS! - Feast your eyes on high-definition 3D graphics and animations.
  • OFF-THE-WALL STORYLINE! - Experience an epic tale through animated cut-scenes featuring quirky characters and unexpected twists.
  • EASY-TO-GRASP CONTROLS AND UNIQUE GAMEPLAY! - Enjoy responsive and intuitive touch controls. Taste the fresh blend of action, arcade and strategy.
  • ENDLESS GAMEPLAY! - Challenge your friends and the rest of the world in four dynamic Survival modes.
  • AWESOME SOUNDTRACK! - Indulge your ears with an original soundtrack and crazy sound effects.

Ant_Raid_01
Ant_Raid_02
Ant_Raid_03
Ant_Raid_04
Ant_Raid_Splash_Banner

Click here to view the embedded video.

QR Code generator

Play Store Download Link

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Featured Android Game Review: Ant Raid [Arcade & Action]

HeroCraft has a new one out and it’s a dandy. It’s called Ant Raid and it’s basically a battle in the garden. You play the ants and you need to take out armies of bees, snails, and other insects. This game was already a hit on iOS devices, but now it’s available in the Google Play Store for your enjoyment. The initial levels are quite easy, but it gets difficult in a hurry.

Each level is in a different surrounding and you’re given a certain number of ants. As other insects approach, your job is to send some or all of the ants to take out each enemy. You do this by tapping on the screen and a circle appears. As you hold your finger the circle will get larger. The ants that are within that circle will be the ones that attack. Now you just tap where you want to send them. Sounds easy right? Well at first it is, but then things get a little more interesting in that you will have to use some of your leftover ants to rescue other ants. You will also need to figure out how many ants you really need to take out a particular enemy in order to conserve your leftovers for the next enemy. Each insect is different, some are fast, and others are bigger and/or stronger.

As you progress, you will also get other powers like the ability to take on colors from fallen enemies like blue and red. Blue will make you invulnerable and red will make you faster. You will also be able to use lightning to squash insects by simply taping your finger on them. Sounds easy, but you will get penalized if you miss them.

You can advance to the next level by surviving the enemies, which will yield you a minimum of one star. The better you do at accomplishing the task the more stars you will get. You can get up to three stars, but what’s cool is that you can see if you’re in the running for the three stars. At the beginning of each round, you are given three stars (shown at the top left), but as you progress, the stars will be removed if you’re not playing up to par (or shall I say above par). If the story mode isn’t your thing, you can play the survival mode, but you will have to complete chapter 1 in the story mode (15 levels) in order to unlock it. In survival mode you simply play until your colony is destroyed, which makes it more arcade style.

Right now Herocraft has Ant Raid on sale for a a launch price of 99-cents, so grab it now and give it a shot. As always, let me know what you think. Check out the video trailer and download links below.

Features

  • GORGEOUS GRAPHICS! - Feast your eyes on high-definition 3D graphics and animations.
  • OFF-THE-WALL STORYLINE! - Experience an epic tale through animated cut-scenes featuring quirky characters and unexpected twists.
  • EASY-TO-GRASP CONTROLS AND UNIQUE GAMEPLAY! - Enjoy responsive and intuitive touch controls. Taste the fresh blend of action, arcade and strategy.
  • ENDLESS GAMEPLAY! - Challenge your friends and the rest of the world in four dynamic Survival modes.
  • AWESOME SOUNDTRACK! - Indulge your ears with an original soundtrack and crazy sound effects.

Ant_Raid_01
Ant_Raid_02
Ant_Raid_03
Ant_Raid_04
Ant_Raid_Splash_Banner

Click here to view the embedded video.

QR Code generator

Play Store Download Link

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No Comments

New interview reveals the future of Google Glass

Google Glass made big news last year when Google introduced the wearable computer at Google I/O in a stunt-filled, live-streaming action sequence, complete with BMX riders, skydivers, and wall repellers. Since then things have been pretty quiet regarding the quirky eye-wear, but today Babak Parviz, who leads the Google Glass project, conducted a small interview with IEEE Spectrum. In the interview Parviz lets us in on both the progress and the future of Google Glass. Below are the most notable tidbits from the interview:

  • The current goal for Google Glass is not an Augmented Reality platform…but in time Parviz believes augmented reality will become a large part of what Google Glass does.
  • Google is planning to ship developer devices out to those who pre-ordered “early” in 2013.
  • The feature set for the device is not set yet. It is still in flux…meaning, Google is not 100% sure what they want the device to do.
  • Users can control the device using a built-in touch pad, voice commands, or head gestures.
  •  Currently, Google has no plans for advertising on the device.
  •  Parviz and team are working on making it possible to accept phone calls on Google Glass.
  • They hope to have battery life be sufficient for the whole day.

If you’re interested in more than just a summary, you can read the whole interview at the source link below. Personally, I don’t see myself wearing something like this on my face, but maybe if Google makes the headset so feature-packed and useful I’d reconsider. Maybe in ten years or so it’ll be a viable product. Anyone think they’d actually wear these things?

Source: IEEE Spectrum

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New interview reveals the future of Google Glass

Google Glass made big news last year when Google introduced the wearable computer at Google I/O in a stunt-filled, live-streaming action sequence, complete with BMX riders, skydivers, and wall repellers. Since then things have been pretty quiet regarding the quirky eye-wear, but today Babak Parviz, who leads the Google Glass project, conducted a small interview with IEEE Spectrum. In the interview Parviz lets us in on both the progress and the future of Google Glass. Below are the most notable tidbits from the interview:

  • The current goal for Google Glass is not an Augmented Reality platform…but in time Parviz believes augmented reality will become a large part of what Google Glass does.
  • Google is planning to ship developer devices out to those who pre-ordered “early” in 2013.
  • The feature set for the device is not set yet. It is still in flux…meaning, Google is not 100% sure what they want the device to do.
  • Users can control the device using a built-in touch pad, voice commands, or head gestures.
  •  Currently, Google has no plans for advertising on the device.
  •  Parviz and team are working on making it possible to accept phone calls on Google Glass.
  • They hope to have battery life be sufficient for the whole day.

If you’re interested in more than just a summary, you can read the whole interview at the source link below. Personally, I don’t see myself wearing something like this on my face, but maybe if Google makes the headset so feature-packed and useful I’d reconsider. Maybe in ten years or so it’ll be a viable product. Anyone think they’d actually wear these things?

Source: IEEE Spectrum

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True Nature of Google Glass Still Undetermined According to Project Lead

In a recent interview, the product manager for Google Glass Babak Parviz, let it be known that 2012′s most interesting device is still a “work in progress.” According to Parviz, Google is still toying with ways to make the wearable computing device usable in the day-to-day and has yet to determine its main features.  For now, [...]

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

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New interview reveals the future of Google Glass

Google Glass made big news last year when Google introduced the wearable computer at Google I/O in a stunt-filled, live-streaming action sequence, complete with BMX riders, skydivers, and wall repellers. Since then things have been pretty quiet regarding the quirky eye-wear, but today Babak Parviz, who leads the Google Glass project, conducted a small interview with IEEE Spectrum. In the interview Parviz lets us in on both the progress and the future of Google Glass. Below are the most notable tidbits from the interview:

  • The current goal for Google Glass is not an Augmented Reality platform…but in time Parviz believes augmented reality will become a large part of what Google Glass does.
  • Google is planning to ship developer devices out to those who pre-ordered “early” in 2013.
  • The feature set for the device is not set yet. It is still in flux…meaning, Google is not 100% sure what they want the device to do.
  • Users can control the device using a built-in touch pad, voice commands, or head gestures.
  •  Currently, Google has no plans for advertising on the device.
  •  Parviz and team are working on making it possible to accept phone calls on Google Glass.
  • They hope to have battery life be sufficient for the whole day.

If you’re interested in more than just a summary, you can read the whole interview at the source link below. Personally, I don’t see myself wearing something like this on my face, but maybe if Google makes the headset so feature-packed and useful I’d reconsider. Maybe in ten years or so it’ll be a viable product. Anyone think they’d actually wear these things?

Source: IEEE Spectrum

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Motorola Electrify M review

Electrify M.

It's been one hell of a year for the smartphone industry, and 2012 produced some of the biggest and most unique innovations to date. More important than the increase in pixel density or the additional processing cores, though, is the progress we've seen in the quality of non-flagship devices. Prior to 2012, shopping for a smartphone on a budget meant you were going to have to make some serious sacrifices in terms of both hardware and software, and if you were a customer of a small or regional carrier, you may as well just buy a Tracfone. All that has changed, though, and today we're seeing increasingly impressive internals and designs hitting the entry and mid-level market. 

Motorola deserves a lot of recognition for this, as it single-handedly changed the way I thought of non-flagship devices with its recent Droid RAZR M. The RAZR M blew me away in terms of how well it performed and how stunning it looked for the price– this was as a mid-level device with specs that could have easily landed it in top-shelf territory on any other carrier. Thankfully, Motorola thought the same, and brought a nearly identical and equally impressive package, the Electrify M, to US Cellular's increasingly impressive lineup. 

read more

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New interview reveals the future of Google Glass

Google Glass made big news last year when Google introduced the wearable computer at Google I/O in a stunt-filled, live-streaming action sequence, complete with BMX riders, skydivers, and wall repellers. Since then things have been pretty quiet regarding the quirky eye-wear, but today Babak Parviz, who leads the Google Glass project, conducted a small interview with IEEE Spectrum. In the interview Parviz lets us in on both the progress and the future of Google Glass. Below are the most notable tidbits from the interview:

  • The current goal for Google Glass is not an Augmented Reality platform…but in time Parviz believes augmented reality will become a large part of what Google Glass does.
  • Google is planning to ship developer devices out to those who pre-ordered “early” in 2013.
  • The feature set for the device is not set yet. It is still in flux…meaning, Google is not 100% sure what they want the device to do.
  • Users can control the device using a built-in touch pad, voice commands, or head gestures.
  •  Currently, Google has no plans for advertising on the device.
  •  Parviz and team are working on making it possible to accept phone calls on Google Glass.
  • They hope to have battery life be sufficient for the whole day.

If you’re interested in more than just a summary, you can read the whole interview at the source link below. Personally, I don’t see myself wearing something like this on my face, but maybe if Google makes the headset so feature-packed and useful I’d reconsider. Maybe in ten years or so it’ll be a viable product. Anyone think they’d actually wear these things?

Source: IEEE Spectrum

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Google’s Nexus 7 gets a taste of webOS

Ever since HP killed off webOS only to later make the project open source, we’ve been seeing it slowly show up for a few of our favorite Android devices. It was ported to the Galaxy Nexus, as well as the NOOK, but today the popular Nexus 7 tablet is getting a taste of webOS — even if it isn’t too functional. Check it out below.

nexus-2-webos-ports_0-580x363

Obviously this is completely a work in progress, and a total hackjob at this point but the Nexus 7 manages to have a few useful working features already. If for some unknown reason you want to ditch Android 4.2 Jelly Bean (maybe just for a day) the webOS port is coming along quite nicely.

While it’s a mostly unstable port at this point in the venture, a few key features appear to be working just fine. Those include the web browser, WiFi, keyboard, brightness, and gesture features. Audio might be a tough one, and the same goes for any sort of hardware acceleration. Here’s a quick look of it in the alpha stages:

webOS Nation reports that the developer managed to get all this done in under a week while enjoying a Christmas vacation from college, so we can expect some serious improvements over the coming weeks and months as long as the developers have the time. Obviously this isn’t Android, the best mobile OS ever, but it sure is nice to see someone keeping the webOS alive and kicking on awesome tablets like the Nexus 7. I’m sure this isn’t the last we’ve heard of it, so stay tuned.

[via SlashGear]

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Cricket’s Samsung Galaxy SIII Gets Its First Official CyanogenMod (10.1) Nightly

cmSIII

In a post to Google+ today, it was announced that Cricket’s Samsung Galaxy SIII (otherwise known as d2cri) had received its first official CM 10.1 nightly, meaning Cricket-connected SIII users can enjoy the Android 4.2-based ROM with all the tweaks and features CyanogenMod fans have come to expect. Those who have followed the Cricket GSIII’s progress toward an official nightly build will also be happy to learn that the device’s camera woes have reportedly been solved.

image

If you’re ready to treat your Cricket Galaxy SIII to a taste of CM 10.1, just hit the download link below to be taken to get.cm.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Cricket’s Samsung Galaxy SIII Gets Its First Official CyanogenMod (10.1) Nightly was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Who should I follow on Twitter? Android edition

DNP Who should I follow on Twitter All things Android

Welcome to another edition of WSIFOT and this time we’re broaching Android — and some related Google services. After the break, we’ve collected some official Twitter channels, alongside writers, personalities, thinkers and tinkerers who follow Google’s tablet and smartphone OS pretty closely. Our list is a work in progress, so if you think we’ve missed out any important Android-centric 140-character authors, let us know through Twitter or in the comments below.

Continue reading Who should I follow on Twitter? Android edition

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New Toshiba camera sensor lets you refocus after the shot, plans 2013 launch in smartphones and tablets

New Toshiba camera sensor lets you refocus after you take the shot, plans to launch in smartphones and tablets next year

Hoping for some after-the-fact focusing in your next smartphone camera? Well, you’ll have to wait around a year, but Toshiba‘s planning exactly that with a new module that houses an array of 500,000 tiny lenses. Within a 1cm-thick unit, these lenses are layered in front of the camera sensor, which can capture slightly different images from each lens arrangement. Those picture can then be combined in a “complete” picture using Toshiba’s own software. Apparently, the camera will also be able to measure the distance between objects in the shot — similar to how 3D images are captured — with the user then able to shift focus between close and distant detail, or even create images that are in-focus throughout. Toshiba says the module will also be able to capture video with a similar degree of focus management — something that Lytro hasn’t got around to just yet. The sensor is still a work in progress, but the manufacturer plans to commercialize the module before the end of 2013. Toshiba is looking to ally itself with multiple smartphone (and tablet) makers — and here’s hoping that it finds its way into a device outside of Japan.

[Thanks Franck]

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Source: Asahi Shinbun (Japanese)

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Download Android 4.2.1 AOKP Custom ROM for the AT&T HTC One X

att-onex

Custom ROMs are freely available for almost every Android smartphone out there with developer groups like CyanogenMod and the vast community at XDA helping users pick the best ROM for their compatible device. The idea of getting a custom ROM on a smartphone is so intriguing that people often forget the risks involved in the process. There’s a high risk of potentially bricking the smartphone undergoing the process, which is important to keep in mind. With that out of the way, we will now discuss one new custom ROM which has surfaced on XDA, fully knowing all the risks involved. This Android 4.2.1 ROM is cooked up for the HTC One XL (the AT&T One X) and is still a work in progress. But for those of you willing to give this ROM a try, here’s how. Bear in mind this is a preview build and merely lets you have Android 4.2.1 on board as most of the features are missing. Make sure you backup your stock ROM before going ahead with the process.

Users will have to download the AOKP JellyBean 4.2.1 ROM and the Google Apps Package which brings Google’s native apps from Android 4.2 (links given below). After unzipping the packages, reboot into recovery and back up your existing version of the ROM. It is important to perform a system wide wipe of your device unless you’re already on an AOKP Jelly Bean ROM already. You can find the rest of the process over at the XDA forums, so make sure you give it a thorough look before going ahead with the flashing.

As of now, the camera functionality does not work at all which means you won’t be able to experience Photo Sphere, which is one of the key features of Android 4.2. The Wi-Fi Tethering feature seems to be broken too, so we recommend you to go ahead with the process only if you have a backup smartphone as your daily driver. The developer rohan32 over at XDA, also pointed out that this ROM might not boot on a few devices, which is where your backup ROM should come in handy. So this ROM should be treated as a work in progress and not necessarily a fully finished product. We suggest you proceed with caution if you don’t know what you’re getting into. Flashing custom ROMs is a risky process as we already mentioned above, and your warranty is immediately voided if you play around with bootloaders which is why Verizon locks the bootloaders of most smartphones.

Here are the download links for the ROM and the Google Apps package. If you own a device and were adventurous enough to try this ROM out, let us know how it went for you.

Android 4.2.1 AOKP JellyBean Release Preview 1.1
Android 4.2.1 Google Apps Package

Find the full process here.

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AT&T lights up 4G LTE in an additional 10 markets

AT&T has announced the latest expansion to their 4G LTE network. And while they have yet to outpace Verizon, they are making nice progress and currently have more than 130 markets covered across the country. Of course, AT&T blurs the line of 4G here and tout themselves as having the “nation’s largest 4G network.”

att-launches-4g-lte-11-markets

More on that in a moment, lets first cover the new 4G LTE markets — of which AT&T has added 10 today. The new markets include Boise, ID; Boulder, CO; Bowling Green, KY; Harrisburg, Hartford, CT; Lancaster, PA; Lexington, KY; New Haven, CT; Ogden-Clearfield, UT and Providence, RI.

Touching back on AT&T having the largest 4G network and there is some truth to that, at least in name. You see, AT&T is including the 4G HSPA+ and the 4G LTE networks. And for those combined, AT&T has coverage for more than 285 million people. Or as the announcement mentions, AT&T has “coverage in 3,000 more 4G cities and towns than Verizon.” For the record, Verizon has 470 LTE markets.

4G aside, AT&T also has a Wi-Fi network available which now has more than 31,000 hotspots. These hotspots are located at restaurants, hotels, bookstores and retailers across the country. Perhaps the key here though, most AT&T smartphone customers are able to get access to the hotspots at no additional cost.

[via SlashGear]

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SEGA pushes new Sonic Jump to the Play Store

Sonic JumpWe are sure many of you ran to the Play Store over the last few days and picked up your share of Sonic games from SEGA. They are have a pretty good sale going on right now. If you are looking for some more Sonic action to add to your collection, SEGA has just released a new game, Sonic Jump.

Taking a classic side scrolling platformer and making it go vertical in a jumper game. Sonic, Tails and Knuckles join the action, each with their own unique ability. You will face 48 various levels in story mode across familiar terrain from Green Hill Zone, plus new worlds including Mountain and Jungle Zones. There are even boss battles to take down the evil DR. Eggman. As you progress you will collect rings that you can use to unlock more characters and special abilities to help you along the way. We can’t forget to mention an endless arcade mode as well. Take a gander at some screen.

Sonic Jump 3 Sonic Jump 2 Sonic Jump 1It looks like it should be a pretty great addition to the Sonic legacy. If you are interested in picking up this new title, just click or scan on the QR down below. If you are looking to snag some of the other games from SEGA, you can see what is on sale right now via our SEGA Sale post.

Application: Sonic Jump
Developer: SEGA of America
Cost: $1.99

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Pudding Monsters Now Live At Google Play

Zeptolab, the company that gave us the popular Cut The Rope game, has a new equally addictive offering over at Google Play. Pudding Monsters is the name of the game and it’s described as a puzzle adventure with a twist. The regular version of the game is free to download while the HD version costs just 99 cents.

Pudding-Monsters

The game will download quickly on your Android device since it only has a 40 MB file size for the regular version and 39 MB for the HD version ( I’d always thought that the HD version would be larger). Kids of all ages will definitely love this game owing to its wacky characters and exciting gameplay.

As soon as you have installed the game on your device you will be treated with a cute introduction. The first few levels will orient you on how to play the game. It’s actually easy since all you have to do is make sure that the cute monsters meet up and combine. This is easily accomplished by sliding one monster into the other. As easy as it may sound it can actually be quite a challenge once you progress through the levels. It’s going to be very tricky and difficult for you to make sure that the monster do not fall off the table.

One thing that annoyed me though is the ads that are being displayed at the bottom of the screen. You can however disable this but to do so you need to purchase the Disable Ads app of Zeptolab over at Google Play. Aside from this little concern the game is a sure hit. There are 75 levels for you to enjoy initially with more being promised to come. You will also get to encounter different monsters with different abilities to add a twist to this sliding puzzle game.

If you are looking for a fun, cute and entertaining game like Cut The Rope then try out Pudding Monsters now.

Via Google Play

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iOS 6 Adoption Increased After the Launch of Google Maps

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Apple’s iOS operating system has been a slow progress ever since it was launched with the first generation iPhone back in 2007. Don’t get me wrong, it is right up there among the best mobile operating systems in the market, but some would feel it hasn’t evolved as much as people would have liked. Sure, it still manages to score remarkably well in CPU/browser benchmarks, but a first gen iPhone user would find no substantial difference in the current iPhone, from a strictly software point of view. And with iOS 6, people had one more reason to not opt for the update and that was the absence of Google Maps. Well, Google Maps used to come by default on previous iterations of iOS, but didn’t make its way with iOS 6 as Apple went with its own half cooked Apple Maps. This was considered a bad move even before its flaws were discovered, and this led to many users of iOS 5 not updating to iOS 6 so as to still use Google Maps. But now, with the official Google Maps app available as a third party download on the iTunes AppStore, it is being said that users have begun updating to the new version of iOS in large numbers.

According to Ad Network, MoPub, iOS 6 adoption increased 29% within 5 days of the launch of the Google Maps app on iOS. This tells us a lot about what Maps means to the users and how much of an impact Google Maps makes for iOS in general. The data was collected after analyzing 12,000 iOS applications from a study. This doesn’t surprise us one bit. We all know how badly Apple Maps backfired for Apple and it only makes sense that iOS users are finally showing faith in the platform. In the meantime, it’s still to be seen if Apple has something coming up to enhance the usability of Apple Maps. Google Maps’ popularity was instantly evident as the app saw 10 million downloads within 2 days of its launch. And the statistics given by MoPub reaffirms that. We heard of Apple’s plans to integrate FourSquare with Apple Maps, which could partially improve the usability of Apple’s offering.

The CEO of MoPub, Jim Payne said – “We observed since the launch of Google Maps for iOS 6 a 30 percent increase in unique iOS 6 users, and we think it’s related to Google Maps. It verifies the hypothesis that people were actually holding back to upgrade until Google Maps was available”.

Source: Tech Crunch
Via: Phone Arena

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Sprint recaps network improvements, lists cities soon to get LTE

SprintSprint today put out a nice little recap of its network progress in 2012, the year we finally saw it start to roll out its LTE network (and start to stick a fork in its old Wimax line).

The big strokes: 49 markets are now live, with a total of 150 "in the coming months." Some 70 markets have seen improved 3G service. You should see better signal strength for phone calls and data, and fewer dropped calls. Voice quality has improved. And data speeds are faster. Of course, you have to be in one of those improved markets, but progress comes one step at a time, we suppose.

But the more important part, we suppose, is that Sprint's teasing upcoming LTE roll-outs. We've got that full list after the break.

Source: Sprint

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Twist for Android uses GPS to tell your friends you’ll be late

There’s a brand new app that was just released today for Android called Twist. We all have that friend or sibling that is just late for everything right? I’ll be there in 10. Then they leave 8 minutes later are are 20 minutes late. Twist for Android looks to curb that by using GPS to give you a real-time alert on progress, as well as the estimated time of arrival. Read on for more details.

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Without revealing exactly where you are to friends and family (who would want to be tracked, this isn’t Mission Impossible). Instead it uses GPS and cell tower signals and location to estimate, and for the most part accurately report when you’ll arrive at a destination. You can fire up the app and then quickly share details, and that ETA information with friends and family, Facebook, or whatever you’d like.

The app obviously knows if you’re walking, driving, or taking public transit as well as letting you chose the options that best fits the situation. I like the fact that once you send out the notification it adds you to their site. While it won’t tell anyone your exact location, the people you’ve sent a notification to can then track the progress, or check for status updates if they are getting impatient.

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The app actually uses Microsoft’s Bing apps, even though Google’s recently opened up their maps API for developers. While we probably don’t expect them to switch over, the experience has been rather impressive with Bing. Instead of always having to send a quick “be there soon” text message, especially while driving (who does that) you’ll now just fire Twist up as you head out the door — and commute in peace. Get it now absolutely free from the link below and give this neat new app a try.

Twist Play Store Link

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[via SlashGear]

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First Xperia Jelly Bean updates due Feb/Mar 2013, but some 2012 phones will be left behind

Android Central

Sony Mobile has provided another update on the progress of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean updates for its 2012 Xperia smartphones.

First up, the company confirmed that its high-end late 2012 devices, Xperia T, TX and V, are on target to receive Jelly Bean in February and March. Once those updates are out the door, Sony will upgrade the Xperia J, Xperia P and Xperia Go in late March. The remaining devices, Xperia S, Xperia SL, Xperia ion and Xperia acro S, will get Jelly Bean in the weeks following.

However, there's bad news for owners of the Xperia U, Xperia miro, Xperia tipo, and Xperia sola, as Sony has confirmed that it will not upgrade these devices beyond Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. That's particularly disappointing considering all these devices are less than nine months old.

So, as is often the case with Android software updates, it's a mixed bag. Sony has shipped more mid-range phones than ever in 2012, however it's been unable to provide upgrade support for these devices just a few months after release. On the other hand, at least all the more expensive devices are accounted for, although there's no official word on the fate of U.S.-specific phones like the AT&T Xperia Ion and Xperia TL.

On a more positive note, Sony says it's excited about some Xperia-specific functionality in its upcoming Jelly Bean software, so Xperia owners who do get upgraded will likely get some new stuff to play with. Sony is expected to unveil a new high-end smartphone at CES in Las Vegas next month, so it's likely that's where we'll get our first look at the company's new Jelly Bean-based firmware.

Source: Sony Mobile Blog

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Verizon Galaxy Note 2 bootloader unlock method now available

Just as we told you this past Monday, the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 for Verizon has had its bootloader unlocked. Our beneficiary, Adam Outler, teased us earlier this week with his progress, but wouldn’t let us in on the full details of the unlock until he revealed it this morning on XDA TV. There was a guessing game, initially — either it would be a hardware mod or a software mod — but Outler eased our souls this morning when he revealed that we wouldn’t have to physically crack the device open in order to gain a full unlock.

Outler proudly exclaims that the Verizon Galaxy Note 2 has gone from “the most secure device on the market, to the least secure device [publicly] available.” Outler has been particularly rebellious throughout the process as his driving motivation was to stick it to Verizon and the carrier’s unhealthy obsession with locking devices down. He even went as far as naming one of the tools needed to unlock the device the “Suck it Verizon Odin Package.”

The Verizon Galaxy Note 2 gained a root method just a couple of days after it launched, but a full bootloader unlock will allow developers to do so much more. Custom recoveries, custom ROMs and more will all be the result of Outler’s hard work, and if you think that deserves a beer or six for him you can donate to his XDA user account appropriately.

If you just want to break the chains on your device and let it roam around in smartphone peace and tranquility, though, be sure to head to the thread for everything you need. Remember to read the instructions fully and carefully before getting started, and remember that your device is your responsibility — anything that happens as a result of applying this unlock is your own fault, and no one is liable for any damages but yourself. That said, have fun!

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LG Optimus G2 rumored to have 5.5-inch 1080p display and coming in May

LG has been making some serious progress in the mobile front as of late. With their highly impressive Optimus G selling quite well, to their new LG Nexus 4 we all know plenty about. Back in November we reported the LG Optimus G2 was already under construction with a 5-inch HD display but now we’re hearing conflicting reports that claims LG is aiming a bit bigger. A 5.5-inch Note II competitor instead.

Early reports suggested LG was going to quickly jump on the 1080p full HD bandwagon with a new Optimus smartphone, but now it looks like they might be blending a few products into one ultimate flagship device. According to the Korean site Asiae the LG Optimus G2 will actually sport a 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080p full HD IPS+ display.

LG’s odd phablet in the Optimus Vu wasn’t what I’d call a success, even though their Optimus L lineup has sold over 10 million strong. If these reports are accurate LG will instead be competing with the Galaxy Note II, and topping Samsung’s upcoming 4.99-inch Galaxy S4 with their new Optimus G2. LG’s getting serious folks!

LG didn’t disclose any sales numbers for the rest of their smartphones, yet, but either way they are looking to have a strong 2013. The Optimus G2 (or whatever they’ll call it) should rock that 1080p HD IPS display, a quad-core processor, 2 or 3GB of RAM, a larger battery and hopefully the latest version of Android. Whether that will be 4.2.1 Jelly Bean or the upcoming Key Lime Pie, we’ll have to wait and see. We’ve seen a few benchmark leaks of this device for AT&T, so that might be the first carrier with this flagship smartphone. Who’s excited about LG’s future? As long as they update timely and keep pushing the cutting edge next year is looking rather bright.

[via UnwiredView]

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Nike Training Club Lunges Into The Play Store

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Nike’s highly popular Training Club app has arrived on Android, allowing you to get your fit on with your phone or tablet. Training Club is an audio-visual, quasi-interactive workout app that allows you to select a workout, guides you through the motions, and shows you what kind of progress you should be making. Like pretty much everything Nike digital, there are rewards that can be earned, and progress can be shared with your friends.

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You can use your own workout music (presumably, using an in-app music player), and there are over 100 workouts to choose from in the app by default.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Nike Training Club Lunges Into The Play Store was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Broadcom expects its own LTE chipsets in 2013, stirs up a quiet 4G market

Broadcom expects its own LTE chipsets in 2013, stirs up a quiet 4G market

If you hadn’t noticed, Qualcomm has a strong grip on the LTE chipset market. While there’s certainly exceptions like Samsung’s in-house designs, the company is often the gatekeeper for modern 4G. Broadcom chief Scott McGregor isn’t going to let one of his main rivals claim such large swaths of the mobile world; he tells investors that his company will have test samples of its own LTE chipsets in 2013, acknowledging that the company is “not there” with its progress towards advanced wireless. That there’s no technical details or shipping targets won’t much help for phone makers (or us), but it’s a welcome break that could lead to fiercer competition and, hopefully, lower costs for fast mobile data.

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Via: FierceWireless

Source: Reuters

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Jelly Bean updates ahoy for many Motorola phones in Q1 2013

Android Central

As part of its new OS upgrade strategy, Motorola has published another update on the progress of new Android 4.1 Jelly Bean (and ICS) firmware for its fleet of phones and tablets.

It's an extensive list, with a complete breakdown of phones by territory, however, we've picked out a few of the biggest upcoming upgrades for readers in the West –

  • RAZR i Jelly Bean update now scheduled for Q1 2013
  • Verizon Droid RAZR HD/RAZR MAXX HD still due Jelly Bean update before 2013
  • AT&T Atrix HD due Jelly Bean update before 2013
  • 3G/LTE Xoom Jelly Bean update delayed to Q1 2013
  • Canadian Atrix HD + RAZR HD due to get Jelly Bean in Q1 2013
  • Euro RAZR HD Jelly Bean update scheduled for Dec. 2012

No word on Android 4.2 for any Motorola devices just yet, but at least Jelly Bean part one should be on the way for a great many Moto phones early next year.

If you want to look up a particular phone or territory, you can do so at the source link below.

Source: Motorola Android Software Upgrade News

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Google announces Google+ communities; G+ now at 235m active users

Android Central

The first of Google's big social announcements today is a new addition to Google + – communities. Communities are groups of people arranged around a Google+ hub page dedicated to a specific topic. Community membership can be public or private, Google says, and support anything from local neighborhoods to groups arranged around a common interest or activity.

Like circles, Google+ will let members share to particular communities with posts, photos, +1's and hangouts, so the community experience should be a familiar one for regular G+ users.

We're not seeing Google+ Communities on our accounts just yet, but we'd expect to see them appearing for most people later today — check the sidebar menu on the right.

Alongside today's announcement, Google also dropped in a couple of stats detailing the progress of its 18-month-old social network. Some 500 members have "upgraded" their Google accounts to Google+, while 235 million are "active" on the service. Google includes users taking part in hangouts and +1ing items on the web and Google Play in this number; the number active "on stream" is apparently 135 million.

More details in today's promo video after the break.

Source: Google Blog

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Zensorium launches Tinké cardiorespiratory health and stress monitor for iOS devices (video)

Zensorium launches Tinké cardiorespiratory health and stress monitor for iOS devices (video)

Planning a gluttonous holiday season and then a health kick in the New Year to balance it out? Well, when you start on the latter, you might want one of Zensorium’s Tinké cardiorespiratory monitors to track your progress. The sensor is compatible with any of your old-fashioned 30-pin iOS devices (it’ll work with the Lightning adapter, too), and with the press of a thumb, it can measure heart rate, blood oxygenation and respiratory rate using light. All this data is fed into the free companion app, which generates an overall fitness score called the “Vita Index” and logs it for later comparison. Stress levels can also be assessed, using fluctuations in your heart rate to score the “Zen Index.” Sharing how unfit and stressed you are can be done via Facebook or Tinké’s own network, which also allows you to compare results with other users worldwide. The monitor will set you back $119 and is available now from Zensorium (link below) in a choice of four colors. If you’d like to start improving your Zen Index right now, then check out the soothing acoustic sounds in the product walkthrough video below the fold.

Continue reading Zensorium launches Tinké cardiorespiratory health and stress monitor for iOS devices (video)

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Source: Zensorium

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