Posts Tagged Report

Leap Motion gets $30 million funding for new motion sensor controller technology

The technology you probably have seen in Steven Speilberg’s 2002 movie Minority Report has been fully realized by Leap Motion’s hand-motion controller. The San Francisco-based startup company recently received $30 million funding for the technology and has partnered with Taiwanese manufacturer Asustek Computer in an agreement that computers bundled with motion sensors would be released later this year. The first batch of controllers, however, will start selling by March.

Courtesy of Leap Motion, via Bloomberg

Courtesy of Leap Motion, via Bloomberg

This isn’t the first time people have seen motion sensors come into play because apparently, such technology has long been used in Microsoft’s Kinect. Leap Motion, however, said its product is not as big (in size) as existing motion sensors in the market today. It comes with two small sensitive cameras enclosed in casing not more than the size of a cigarette lighter, which would be set atop a computer desk.

The sensors are sensitive enough to detect 10 fingers and filter motions created by each one of them to the hundredth of a millimeter. The controller will be marketed with $70 price tag.

Leap Motion’s controller has lured many investors including Highland Capital Partners and Founders Fund aside from the already mentioned Asustek Computer. The idea of controlling a computer with hands started long ago and people were mesmerized by it even more when Steven Speilberg illustrated it almost realistically through its movie starred by Tom Cruise. The evolution of computer and mobile technologies paved a way for three-dimensional controls and the company is honest enough to acknowledge that.

With Asustek Computer agreeing with Leap Motion to bundle the controllers with some of its computers, the next thing we may be seeing are laptops with built-in motion sensors instead of mere cameras. The fact that the company is open to the idea to license its technologies is the key to have this sensor be put on other devices other than computers. One of the possibilities is that Smart TV manufacturers like Samsung and LG might use Leap Motion’s technology to make things even better in their products.

Leap Motion is still in the process of marketing its controllers as well as attracting even more developers to build more apps for it. Chief Executive Officer Michael Buckwald also shared about the company’s desire to invade tablet and car markets with its technology.

[source: Bloomberg]

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Android still on top in comScore’s November 2012 market share report

comScore has delivered its market share report for November 2012, and unsurprisingly, Android finds itself at the top of the charts yet again. For the three month period ending in November 2012, Android’s market share grew to 53.7%, up 1.1 percentage points from the three month period ending August 2012. iOS was on the rise in that period too, gaining 0.7 percentage points over the period ending in November to settle at 35%.

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This growth for iOS and Android, however small, came at the expense of RIM, Microsoft, and Symbian, all of which were down in the three month period ending November 2012. None of those companies have much further they can drop, with Symbian in particular now holding onto just 0.5% market share. Of course, an important thing to remember is that Windows Phone 8 had just been released when comScore collected its stats for November. Couple that with the fact that RIM is gearing up to launch BlackBerry 10 at the end of this month, and we might just see both companies begin to climb up the rankings in comScore’s next report.

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Who was at the top of the list for mobile OEM market share? Samsung, yet again. The company experienced growth in the three month period ending in November 2012, climbing 1.2 percentage points to a 26.9% share. Apple was up too, enjoying 18.5% market share after gaining 1.4 percentage points. LG, Motorola, and HTC rank on the top five list as well, though unfortunately they all took a loss in overall market share during the period.

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comScore says that 123.3 million people in the US owned smartphones at the end of the period, which means that smartphones have achieved 53% market penetration. 75.9% said they use their smartphones to send text messages to other phones, while using downloaded apps and using mobile browsers rounded out the top three in comScore’s mobile content usage chart with 54.2% and 52.1% respectively. If you’ve got a few minutes, be sure to read through comScore’s full report – it houses a lot of interesting data on the smartphone market.

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SoundGecko reads your RSS feed to you in stunning clarity [VIDEO]

As I’m not a driver (not even infrequently — I just don’t drive) I rarely find the urge to download text-to-speech apps. Most tend to be cumbersome, ugly and sound like the deep, ghastly bellows of a horse, but SoundGecko is offering an option that just might have the right combination of easy, fast and pleasant to compel yours truly to “listen” to more of the news.

SoundGecko allows you to set up a number of RSS feeds which can be delivered to your devices as audio clips without much fuss. New feed items are automatically converted to audio and synced to your phone for quick and easy listening whenever you get ready to sit down and digest your news for the day.

Created by startup 121cast, SoundGecko uses an accurate text-to-speech engine that allows the conversation to flow as if you’re listening to a report from an actual radio broadcast. You can still hear the odd robotic nuance of a digitized voice every now and then, but I never had to rewind to catch a word I couldn’t understand. I was more impressed with the fact that it could accurately pronounce my name than anything else.

The service can be had for free, but there are some limitations. You’ll only get to add one custom feed, you’ll only get up to 4,000 words per article read to you and you’ll only get to listen to 30 articles per day. The 4,000 words per article limit won’t be an issue for most (believe me, most articles don’t go anywhere near that amount of words), but the other two limitations require a monthly subscription to lift.

Usually $7.95 a month, SoundGecko’s premium service will allow you to add up to 100 different custom feeds, listen to an unlimited amount of articles per day and will read up to 30,000 words per article. The insane 30,000 word limit will be more useful for those wanting to read long manuals, whitepapers and other such documents in PDF form as the service does support that (simply email the document to yourself).

If you act fast, though, you can get locked into the service for just $2.95 per month, and SoundGecko gives you its word that you’ll never be asked to pay more than that. It’s a limited time holiday special so this offer might expire very, very soon. Give it a shot, and be sure to download the app from the Google Play Store to take it with you on the go. Be sure to take a look at our quick hands-on video above.

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Apple And Intel Rumored To Be Developing Smartwatch For Q1-Q2 2013 Release

Ever seen those iPod Nano devices used as watches? This became popular when TikTok and LunaTik released their popular iPod Nano watch straps that converted the portable music player to a cool looking wristwatch. Apple may be taking ideas from this as the company is rumored to be developing a smartwatch in partnership with Intel which will be released in the first half of next year.

Apple Smartwatch

This was first reported by a Chinese blog that got hold of the report from sources  inside the supply chain. Although information is still sketchy as of this moment it seems like the device will be equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 and will be able to communicate with other iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPod. Some people have even speculated that this watch will allow you to make phone calls from your wrist.

Apple Smartwatch Specifications (Rumored)

  • 1.5-inch OLED display
  • Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) coated glass
  • Bluetooth 4.0

If this rumor is true then this won’t be the first smartphone watch to hit the market. Sony has already a smartwatch for the Android market and in fact has already released their second model which comes with even improved specification compared to the first one.

It makes good sense for the company to come up with this product since it will complement their mobile devices.  If you own an iPhone and an iPad you won’t need to check on them quite often since you can do it with your smartwatch and see if you have important notifications.

It’s going to be a busy year for Apple this coming 2013 as the company is reportedly set to release several new devices. We’ve got reports of the iPad 5 coming, the iPhone 5S or iPhone 6, a new iPad Mini and now this smartwatch.

As usual, we have to take this rumor with a grain of salt as Apple has not announced anything official yet.

via thenextweb

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Acer aiming to offer $99 Android tablets in 2013

The tablet race has slowly been heating up. Between the Kindle Fire and Google’s Nexus 7 the budget market is a tight one, and it appears like things will only be getting cheaper. We’ve been hearing reports of a few different $99 Android tablets hitting the scene soon, and now the Wall Street Journal has confirmed a few budget Acer Iconia Tabs are coming next year.

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Last week some details surfaced about a new Acer B1 tablet looking to take on Google’s Nexus 7, and Barnes & Nobles design and price. Between those impressive pictures and decent specs you’d have a pretty nice tablet. If Acer can truly hit that $99 price point, and offer a good product, they might have a real winner.

The problem here however, is the Wall Street Journal claims Acer’s new budget tablets will mainly be focused in those other budget tablet Chinese markets, and not for the US. Oddly enough that Acer B1 recently was spotted at the FCC, so that is where we have some confusion. Acer might be offering some budget devices stateside, but their main attention will be in China.

Would a $99 tablet with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and a decent little dual-core processor be something you’re interested in? Details confirm a 1024 x 600 resolution like the original Kindle Fire, so they’d certainly be hitting a competitive price point. The report from the WSJ even mentions ASUS has no plans to offer cheap tablets in the US, but we’ve seen multiple leaks suggesting a $99 device is coming soon. Could that also be going overseas too? That would be a bummer. We’ll report back when we hear more details from either party.

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Samsung Reported To Ship Over 350 Million Smartphones in 2013

samsung-overtakes-nokia

The smartphone market is currently being ruled by Samsung with no other company coming even close to denting the company’s marketshare. The Koreans even managed to sneak up on Nokia when it came to total handset shipments. So one would say the company is having a great couple of years at the office. And according to a report emerging from industry sources that have access to what goes on around Samsung, the company could be looking to ship a total of 500 million handsets next year out of which 350 million will be smartphones. This certainly means that the market for smartphones is increasing, and we will see more people carrying smartphones in 2013. I wonder where this will bring the feature phones, as the number seems to be heavily depleting with each passing day.

350 million out of an estimated 860 to 900 million smartphones reported to be shipped in 2013 is a resounding number. This will bring Samsung’s smartphone marketshare to 40%. This number should surprise no one with the company’s current form and the successors to the Galaxy S III and the Note II launching next year, with the former being the first to launch. It is still not known as to when the device will launch exactly, but the internet is rife with speculations that the device will trump all flagships as has been the case with previous iterations of the Galaxy flagship. However, things are slightly different this year with HTC, Sony and LG all eagerly looking to make a comeback in the mobile arena. HTC has already teased us all with the Butterfly J in Japan and the Droid DNA in the U.S, but these are exclusive to limited locations, so the world is eagerly anticipating the release of the new global HTC flagship or shall we say the M7. The company however has lowered its expectations for 2013 as we reported previously. Undoubtedly, even this year the competition will be neck and neck, especially with manufacturers like Oppo and Huawei read to launch their flagship 1080p droids.

And then there’s Apple with the iPhone 5, managing to get some good sales off the device. Nokia should also do fairly well, but not in the smartphone department. RIM is launching BlackBerry 10 next month with launch scheduled to happen shortly after that, which should also see a fair amount of takers.  So 2013 is certainly going to be a very eventful year for mobile enthusiasts, and looking at the current pace it will undoubtedly surpass the achievements made in 2012.

Source: Digitimes
Via: Phone Arena

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OG Droid RAZR (And MAXX) Gets Jolly With Jelly Bean As Users Report A Surprise Update (98.72.8) Rolls Out

droidrazrIt may not be all that often that a phone over a year old will still be getting many updates, but lo and behold, it’s a Festivus miracle. Users are reporting that the original Droid RAZR/RAZR MAXX is currently seeing an update roll out to Jelly Bean (4.1.2) right now. And to think, this phone launched with Gingerbread.

razrjbupdate1 razrjbupdate2

The update is 331.7MB, so you’ll want to get on WiFi before you start the download. Once it’s installed your system version will be bumped to 98.72.8, and Jelly Bean will be all yours, and everything that entails, including Google Now, Project Butter, and all the fancy new voice search options.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

OG Droid RAZR (And MAXX) Gets Jolly With Jelly Bean As Users Report A Surprise Update (98.72.8) Rolls Out was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Google’s Ruining Christmas Again: User Files Bug Report Over Sad Santa Emoji, Loses Holiday Cheer

sadsantatinyMan, Google. You just can’t stop screwing with Christmas, can you? First you cancel December, and now this? In a very real and totally serious bug report over on Google Code, one user is reporting a serious flaw in Android: If you use the Emoji keyboard to enter a Santa face, he looks decidedly unhappy. Emotionless at best. But, as everyone knows, “Santa should be jolly.”

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Okay, yes, so Google did fix that Calendar problem, and even went out of its way to build a special Santa Tracker, after Norad hired that other search engine.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Google’s Ruining Christmas Again: User Files Bug Report Over Sad Santa Emoji, Loses Holiday Cheer was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Google working with Motorola to create the ultimate “X Phone” in 2013

Ever since Google acquired Motorola Mobile in early 2012, Android enthusiasts have been waiting anxiously to see what kind of amazing super-phone the combined companies would create. Well, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal, we could be finding out as early as next year. According to some insider sources, Google is working very closely with Motorola to build the ultimate superphone, code named “X Phone”. Larry Page is said to have told the Motorola team to “think big” and has promised significant funds for the device. Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive has said that the company is currently “investing in a team and a technology that will do something quite different than the current approaches.” What is this “different” approach that the X Phone will be taking? It’s anyone’s guess really, but the fact that the phone is called the “X Phone” could be an homage to Google’s super secretive, super forward thinking “X Labs”, a branch of Google engineers that develop hardware and ideas that will change the future.

It is also quite possible that the “X Phone” name could be a hint that this phone will be the next Nexus device, since the Nexus logo is essentially an X. Other insiders are reporting that the phone will be followed by an X Tablet, also produced by Motorola. Unfortunately, the development of the hardware has supposedly hit some obstacles in the manufacturing and supply-chain process, which has caused Google and Motorola to have to rethink some of their original plans for the X Phone. As of now, we have no word on when the phone will be released, but the source says that it’ll be some time in 2013. That’s a big window, but hopefully they mean January 1st! Any of you have any theories about the “different approach” the X Phone will be taking when it comes to hardware?

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

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Google working with Motorola to create the ultimate “X Phone” in 2013

Ever since Google acquired Motorola Mobile in early 2012, Android enthusiasts have been waiting anxiously to see what kind of amazing super-phone the combined companies would create. Well, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal, we could be finding out as early as next year. According to some insider sources, Google is working very closely with Motorola to build the ultimate superphone, code named “X Phone”. Larry Page is said to have told the Motorola team to “think big” and has promised significant funds for the device. Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive has said that the company is currently “investing in a team and a technology that will do something quite different than the current approaches.” What is this “different” approach that the X Phone will be taking? It’s anyone’s guess really, but the fact that the phone is called the “X Phone” could be an homage to Google’s super secretive, super forward thinking “X Labs”, a branch of Google engineers that develop hardware and ideas that will change the future.

It is also quite possible that the “X Phone” name could be a hint that this phone will be the next Nexus device, since the Nexus logo is essentially an X. Other insiders are reporting that the phone will be followed by an X Tablet, also produced by Motorola. Unfortunately, the development of the hardware has supposedly hit some obstacles in the manufacturing and supply-chain process, which has caused Google and Motorola to have to rethink some of their original plans for the X Phone. As of now, we have no word on when the phone will be released, but the source says that it’ll be some time in 2013. That’s a big window, but hopefully they mean January 1st! Any of you have any theories about the “different approach” the X Phone will be taking when it comes to hardware?

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

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[Weekend Poll And News Roundup] Which New Android Phone Are You Most Looking Forward To In 2013?

nexusae0_testwhite

Welcome to the Android Police Weekend Poll and News Roundup. For last week’s poll and roundup, see What Twitter App Are You Using?

As we near the end of 2012, the rumor mill for 2013 is already churning away. Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal published a report on a Motorola ‘X Phone’ project being headed up by a former Googler, and I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m dying to see a Google-Moto mashup, especially if the premise is trying new and interesting things.

But Motorola’s not the only one with new stuff on the horizon in the next year.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

[Weekend Poll And News Roundup] Which New Android Phone Are You Most Looking Forward To In 2013? was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Google working with Motorola to create the ultimate “X Phone” in 2013

Ever since Google acquired Motorola Mobile in early 2012, Android enthusiasts have been waiting anxiously to see what kind of amazing super-phone the combined companies would create. Well, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal, we could be finding out as early as next year. According to some insider sources, Google is working very closely with Motorola to build the ultimate superphone, code named “X Phone”. Larry Page is said to have told the Motorola team to “think big” and has promised significant funds for the device. Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive has said that the company is currently “investing in a team and a technology that will do something quite different than the current approaches.” What is this “different” approach that the X Phone will be taking? It’s anyone’s guess really, but the fact that the phone is called the “X Phone” could be an homage to Google’s super secretive, super forward thinking “X Labs”, a branch of Google engineers that develop hardware and ideas that will change the future.

It is also quite possible that the “X Phone” name could be a hint that this phone will be the next Nexus device, since the Nexus logo is essentially an X. Other insiders are reporting that the phone will be followed by an X Tablet, also produced by Motorola. Unfortunately, the development of the hardware has supposedly hit some obstacles in the manufacturing and supply-chain process, which has caused Google and Motorola to have to rethink some of their original plans for the X Phone. As of now, we have no word on when the phone will be released, but the source says that it’ll be some time in 2013. That’s a big window, but hopefully they mean January 1st! Any of you have any theories about the “different approach” the X Phone will be taking when it comes to hardware?

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

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Sony Yuga to debut as the Xperia Z, feature 5-inch 1080p display with OptiContrast technology

A new report regarding Sony’s heavily leaked Yuga C660X has surfaced today, suggesting the elusive handset could eventually launch as the Xperia Z. In addition to the new naming scheme, the device is said to sport a water and dust resistant coating, with an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP55 and IP57. In the past, Sony has equipped its Xperia V and Xperia Acro S with the same type of coating.

The handset’s rumored 5-inch 1080p display will be outfitted with Sony’s OptiContrast technology, something that isn’t all too surprising considering the latest fleet of the company’s devices features the same display tech. What’s more is that the Xperia Z will reportedly be just 7.99mm thin, equating to one of the thinnest devices ever for Sony.

Of course, there’s no word on a release date, or even when we’ll get a chance to take a look at this bad boy, but we’d expect to hear something official in Q1 of 2013.

Source: XperiaBlog

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Google working with Motorola to create the ultimate “X Phone” in 2013

Ever since Google acquired Motorola Mobile in early 2012, Android enthusiasts have been waiting anxiously to see what kind of amazing super-phone the combined companies would create. Well, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal, we could be finding out as early as next year. According to some insider sources, Google is working very closely with Motorola to build the ultimate superphone, code named “X Phone”. Larry Page is said to have told the Motorola team to “think big” and has promised significant funds for the device. Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive has said that the company is currently “investing in a team and a technology that will do something quite different than the current approaches.” What is this “different” approach that the X Phone will be taking? It’s anyone’s guess really, but the fact that the phone is called the “X Phone” could be an homage to Google’s super secretive, super forward thinking “X Labs”, a branch of Google engineers that develop hardware and ideas that will change the future.

It is also quite possible that the “X Phone” name could be a hint that this phone will be the next Nexus device, since the Nexus logo is essentially an X. Other insiders are reporting that the phone will be followed by an X Tablet, also produced by Motorola. Unfortunately, the development of the hardware has supposedly hit some obstacles in the manufacturing and supply-chain process, which has caused Google and Motorola to have to rethink some of their original plans for the X Phone. As of now, we have no word on when the phone will be released, but the source says that it’ll be some time in 2013. That’s a big window, but hopefully they mean January 1st! Any of you have any theories about the “different approach” the X Phone will be taking when it comes to hardware?

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

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Sony Yuga to debut as the Xperia Z, feature 5-inch 1080p display with OptiContrast technology

A new report regarding Sony’s heavily leaked Yuga C660X has surfaced today, suggesting the elusive handset could eventually launch as the Xperia Z. In addition to the new naming scheme, the device is said to sport a water and dust resistant coating, with an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP55 and IP57. In the past, Sony has equipped its Xperia V and Xperia Acro S with the same type of coating.

The handset’s rumored 5-inch 1080p display will be outfitted with Sony’s OptiContrast technology, something that isn’t all too surprising considering the latest fleet of the company’s devices features the same display tech. What’s more is that the Xperia Z will reportedly be just 7.99mm thin, equating to one of the thinnest devices ever for Sony.

Of course, there’s no word on a release date, or even when we’ll get a chance to take a look at this bad boy, but we’d expect to hear something official in Q1 of 2013.

Source: XperiaBlog

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Google working with Motorola to create the ultimate “X Phone” in 2013

Ever since Google acquired Motorola Mobile in early 2012, Android enthusiasts have been waiting anxiously to see what kind of amazing super-phone the combined companies would create. Well, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal, we could be finding out as early as next year. According to some insider sources, Google is working very closely with Motorola to build the ultimate superphone, code named “X Phone”. Larry Page is said to have told the Motorola team to “think big” and has promised significant funds for the device. Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive has said that the company is currently “investing in a team and a technology that will do something quite different than the current approaches.” What is this “different” approach that the X Phone will be taking? It’s anyone’s guess really, but the fact that the phone is called the “X Phone” could be an homage to Google’s super secretive, super forward thinking “X Labs”, a branch of Google engineers that develop hardware and ideas that will change the future.

It is also quite possible that the “X Phone” name could be a hint that this phone will be the next Nexus device, since the Nexus logo is essentially an X. Other insiders are reporting that the phone will be followed by an X Tablet, also produced by Motorola. Unfortunately, the development of the hardware has supposedly hit some obstacles in the manufacturing and supply-chain process, which has caused Google and Motorola to have to rethink some of their original plans for the X Phone. As of now, we have no word on when the phone will be released, but the source says that it’ll be some time in 2013. That’s a big window, but hopefully they mean January 1st! Any of you have any theories about the “different approach” the X Phone will be taking when it comes to hardware?

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

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Sony Yuga to debut as the Xperia Z, feature 5-inch 1080p display with OptiContrast technology

A new report regarding Sony’s heavily leaked Yuga C660X has surfaced today, suggesting the elusive handset could eventually launch as the Xperia Z. In addition to the new naming scheme, the device is said to sport a water and dust resistant coating, with an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP55 and IP57. In the past, Sony has equipped its Xperia V and Xperia Acro S with the same type of coating.

The handset’s rumored 5-inch 1080p display will be outfitted with Sony’s OptiContrast technology, something that isn’t all too surprising considering the latest fleet of the company’s devices features the same display tech. What’s more is that the Xperia Z will reportedly be just 7.99mm thin, equating to one of the thinnest devices ever for Sony.

Of course, there’s no word on a release date, or even when we’ll get a chance to take a look at this bad boy, but we’d expect to hear something official in Q1 of 2013.

Source: XperiaBlog

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Sony Yuga to debut as the Xperia Z, feature 5-inch 1080p display with OptiContrast technology

A new report regarding Sony’s heavily leaked Yuga C660X has surfaced today, suggesting the elusive handset could eventually launch as the Xperia Z. In addition to the new naming scheme, the device is said to sport a water and dust resistant coating, with an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP55 and IP57. In the past, Sony has equipped its Xperia V and Xperia Acro S with the same type of coating.

The handset’s rumored 5-inch 1080p display will be outfitted with Sony’s OptiContrast technology, something that isn’t all too surprising considering the latest fleet of the company’s devices features the same display tech. What’s more is that the Xperia Z will reportedly be just 7.99mm thin, equating to one of the thinnest devices ever for Sony.

Of course, there’s no word on a release date, or even when we’ll get a chance to take a look at this bad boy, but we’d expect to hear something official in Q1 of 2013.

Source: XperiaBlog

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No Comments

Sony Yuga to debut as the Xperia Z, feature 5-inch 1080p display with OptiContrast technology

A new report regarding Sony’s heavily leaked Yuga C660X has surfaced today, suggesting the elusive handset could eventually launch as the Xperia Z. In addition to the new naming scheme, the device is said to sport a water and dust resistant coating, with an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP55 and IP57. In the past, Sony has equipped its Xperia V and Xperia Acro S with the same type of coating.

The handset’s rumored 5-inch 1080p display will be outfitted with Sony’s OptiContrast technology, something that isn’t all too surprising considering the latest fleet of the company’s devices features the same display tech. What’s more is that the Xperia Z will reportedly be just 7.99mm thin, equating to one of the thinnest devices ever for Sony.

Of course, there’s no word on a release date, or even when we’ll get a chance to take a look at this bad boy, but we’d expect to hear something official in Q1 of 2013.

Source: XperiaBlog

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Report: Motorola and Google are Designing the “X Phone”

According to a new report out of the Wall Street Journal, Google and Motorola are finally working on their first big project, a “marquee” product known internally as the “X Phone.” The major goal of this phone, clearly, is to create something that can finally rival products from Samsung and Apple, but also try to [...]

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

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RIM admits user base decrease as shares drops

sc001Following a report that the number of its subscribers had decreased, Research in Motion announced on Thursday that it will be amending its charges plan for its BlackBerry services, which also caused its stock in the U.S. to dive 10 percent.

Prior to the announcement, RIM’s stock rose 8 percent to $15.25 that stretches beyond the regular trading hours after RIM revealed lesser quarterly loss than previously expected. The company also said that it has raised enough money for the upcoming release of its new BlackBerry 10 smartphone next year.

However, things turned to sour during Chief Executive Thorsten Heins’ conference call with analysts. In the conference, he announced that RIM is thinking of offering more flexible pricing of its BlackBerry services, once vaunted for providing robust security features but has come under attack by competitors.

The conference call also saw the growing concerns of analysts about the potential negative effects of such changes, which could mean a decrease of RIM’s profitable services revenue stream. RIM’s U.S.-traded stock fell about 10 percent to $12.74 by 6.20 in the afternoon Eastern Standard Time.

Investors have also started to show concerns about the decreasing subscriber base. Although RIM had seen the numbers of its customers shrink in North America in recent years, it was able to successfully market its products and services in emerging markets.

“The early reaction was probably just ‘Hey, numbers looked OK, better loss, the cash flow was good’ but if you know the company, you’re looking at the subscriber base falling off,” a San Francisco-based analysts from Evercore Partners Mark McKechnie said.

One of the reasons for the increase in RIM’s shares earlier was because it was able to secure more cash–$$2.9 billion– from a $2.3 billion mark during the previous quarter.

Analysts saw the need for RIM to raise more cash for manufacturing its new BlackBerry 10 smartphone and promote it in a very competitive market. RIM hopes to regain the market shares it has lost to rivals like the popular Apple Inc’s iPhone and other devices running versions of Google Inc’s Android software.

“They’ve done a great job at generating cash,”  analyst Tavis McCourt from Raymond James  in Nashville said. “They’re certainly in a much better position than they were three or four quarters ago.”

RIM also announced that it is now doing tests of its BlackBerry 10 devices with more than 150 carriers–an increase in figure of about 50 last October. BB10 devices will be released on January 30.

Heins assured everyone during the conference call that more things can be expected leading to the launch.

RIM posted a lower-than-expected $114 million or 22 cents per share operating loss this quarter. Wall Street expected that the company would be losing 35  cents per share previously.

Additionally, RIM disclosed  a surprising net profit of $9 million net profit for the third fiscal quarter that ended on December 1,  a positive note on the restructuring done on the company’s international operations. During the same period last year, the company posted a net profit of $265 million.

RIM’s subscriber base fell to 79 million during the quarter from an 80 million mark during the period that ended in September 1. the company’s user base has seen growth for the past few years even if it was losing ground in the United States and Canada as it reached out to markets from emerging economies.

“We’re encouraged that the subscriber base only declined slightly during a very public transition, and BlackBerry sales were about what we expected,” Morningstar analyst Brian Colello said.

source: reuters

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HTC is rumored to begin cutting back on smartphones models in 2013

Samsung and Apple have taken the lead in terms of the smartphone market, which means that others such as HTC are going to have to start playing catch-up. And based on that, it is now being reported that HTC is going to be scaling things back as they move into the new year. That being said though, the report is coming by way of DigiTimes, so we take that as it comes.

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According to what was in the report, HTC has “suspended development of a number of new models for 2013″ which in turn has been said to have reduced the visibility of its orders for handset components. This comes by way of some unnamed industry sources. And as one would suspect, HTC has declined to comment on the matter. We should also state that this DigiTimes report failed to mention any specific models. In other words, we are not entirely sure if this means HTC will be cutting back on Android or Windows Phone

Other details suggest that due to the cutbacks, HTC will actually see a 10-15 percent rise in smartphone sales during the first quarter of 2013 as opposed to the 20-30 percent growth that was previously expected. Granted, assuming the first bit about the cutting back proves to be accurate, then this lower rise in sales only sounds logical.

All said and done, maybe HTC cutting back on models will be a good thing for the company. Let’s just hope that the rumored M7 doesn’t end up as one of the handsets that gets a cut. Otherwise, while not a handset for 2013, they seem to have made a decent splash with the Droid DNA which launched a short while back with Verizon Wireless. Maybe cutting back and following-up with devices similar to the DNA will be the magic they need.

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Microsoft Not Being Able to offer Nokia Lumia 920s to its Own Employees Due To Limited Stocks

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Microsoft is pretty pumped up for the Windows Phone operating system and rightly so. Its employees work like ants to keep things together and they are indeed a hardworking bunch. And to reward them, Microsoft had initially promised to give a Windows Phone 8 device each to all of its employees. And while it was fulfilled in most parts, a report which is emerging now suggests that the company could be shying away from that promise to fulfil customer orders. This info comes from Microsoft Germany, which had apparently placed internal orders for about 1500 units of the Nokia Lumia 920. And out of these, only a few have arrived, it is said. A Microsoft employee was quick to leak this info out and tell the world about it. It must be noted that Microsoft had promised its employees a WP8 smartphone of their choice and not necessarily the Nokia Lumia 920. But considering the fact that the Lumia 920 is one of the premier WP8 smartphones out there, we can understand why a majority of the employees would order that.

This is what a tipster from Microsoft Germany had to say – “Microsoft Germany renounces in favor of the consumer on the supply of most of the internal Lumia 920 orders. They were ordered around 1500 units and only a fraction of it has been delivered. Most of the equipment was the Telekom sale left to business customers.

It is not news to us that the Nokia Lumia 920, despite being one of the top WP8 smartphones, is facing shortage issues. Well, not the kind of shortage that the Nexus 4 is seeing, but there’s a scarcity regardless. So this pretty much reaffirms the reports we’ve been hearing as devices have been running out of stock pretty quick. It was reported that some AT&T stores in the U.S were keeping pretty low stocks of the device, which continues to surprise everybody. It is being deemed as Microsoft’s only hope at a revival in the mobile arena, as other competitive offerings haven’t performed that greatly. There haven’t been many to begin with, but we guess things could change once the Samsung Ativ S sees a wider roll out.

So it is rather unfortunate for Microsoft that Nokia is having trouble keeping up with supply of the device internally. Perhaps the Finns underestimated the sales of the device. With Christmas almost here, we expect Nokia to increase production of the smartphone so as to increase shipments of the Lumia 920. It is being reported that Huawei will unveil a new WP8 device at the CES event in January. Huawei is known to have a stronghold in the Chinese market, which is where the Lumia 920T was recently launched. So Nokia needs to step up its game if it wants to sustain in the most populous country in the world, because Huawei is very well loved in China and Nokia would find it difficult to take them on.

Source: WP Area (German)
Via: WM Poweruser

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Millenial Media: Samsung Ad Impressions Market Share Doubled In Last Year While HTC And Motorola Halved

2012-12-19_17h29_28If you needed any clearer indication that Samsung basically owns the Android world while HTC and Motorola are in trouble, maybe this will help. According to Millenial Media, a mobile advertising firm, ad impressions on its platform from Samsung handsets shot up from 23% to 46% in the last year. Meanwhile, HTC plummeted from 32% to 16%, while Moto dropped from 22% to 11%. This is a massive change.

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Now, before we go getting bent out of shape over this, let’s clarify a couple things. First off, this is coming from ad impressions. What that means is that it has no tangible relationship to units sold or profits made by a company.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Millenial Media: Samsung Ad Impressions Market Share Doubled In Last Year While HTC And Motorola Halved was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Samsung bests Nokia to become top smartphone brand for 2012

The competition to become the top smartphone brand is definitely cutthroat, and it’s one that Nokia has dominated for the past 14 years. It looks like that’ll all change soon, with Samsung poised to take that first place spot from Nokia to become the top smartphone brand in 2012. That’s according to a new IHS iSuppli report, which claims that Samsung will account for 29% of all smartphone shipments by the end of the year.

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Last year, Samsung only managed to take 24% market share for itself, which couldn’t beat Nokia’s 30% market share. This year the tables have turned, with Nokia projected to drop down to 24% and pave the way for Samsung to take the crown. Apple is projected to hold steady at third, gaining three percentage points to settle at 10% market share for the year.

That means Samsung will be well ahead of its archnemesis, widening the gap between the two to a significant 19 percentage points. ZTE isn’t expected to experience any real change, staying at 6% from 2011 to 2012, while LG comes in at fifth, losing two percentage points and falling to 4%. It should also be a big year for smartphones in general, with IHS saying that smartphone shipments will rise 35.5% while overall cell phone shipments will only increase by a single percentage point. This means that smartphones will enjoy further adoption by the mobile phone using public, which must be music to all these companies’ ears.

Of course, it isn’t all that surprising to see Samsung come out above Nokia for 2012, with the Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II as big as they are. Nokia hasn’t had any major hits this year, and its flagship devices for 2012 just recently launched. If Windows Phone 8 takes off, Nokia may be able to reclaim its title in 2013, but it’ll have some tough competition regardless thanks next year’s release of the Galaxy S IV. Stay tuned!

[via SlashGear]

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Eric Schmidt interviews Stephen Colbert and talks Google Play

One of my favorite late night TV hosts Stephen Colbert from The Colbert Report is in the Android news world today after being interviewed by Google’s own Eric Schmidt. As I’m sure many of you know (or don’t) Colbert is known for his outrageous comedy and talks of politics, interviews with celebrities and more. Today however in a comedy skit Colbert takes a stop by Google‘s NY headquarters to be interviewed by Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, and it’s certainly worth a watch.

Screen Shot 2012-12-17 at 2.27.54 PM

We won’t be talking Android here too much, nor about his Super PAC, but instead about Stephen Colbert’s new book. For comedy sakes he takes some funny and laugh filled questions from Google employees as he and Schmidt try to keep a straight face, and it’s quite enjoyable. For those that watch The Colbert Report regularly this will be funny, for everyone else — he’s a little odd.

The video below is about an hour long, so you can enjoy it if you choose but the fun part here being that Eric Schmidt took a few opportunities to talk about Android, the Google Play Store, and bash Apple at the same time. Something we’ve been seeing from Schmidt a lot as of late. At times I wish he’d stop interrupting and trying to be funny, but he did quite well considering Colbert does this nightly. The good stuff starts about 8 minutes in.

Eric Schmidt mentioned “I should not turn this into an Android commercial,” but after a few moments he got his plugs in where possible. Schmidt used the moment to talk up Android over Apple, and that one rainforest company (Amazon). Stating Android is currently “five times bigger than the iPhone.” The funny interview was all about Stephen Colbert’s new book (don’t ask) but Google’s chairman took that moment to attack Apple too. Mentioning that offering his new book “in the Google Play Store people will actually be reading your book.”

They briefly made jokes about Android, Google, the Nexus 7 and a few other things so it certainly is worth a watch if you’re a fan of Android or The Colbert Report. Hit the links below to see everything Eric Schmidt’s had to say lately regarding Android and Apple.

[via AllThingsD]

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Eric Schmidt interviews Stephen Colbert and talks Google Play

One of my favorite late night TV hosts Stephen Colbert from The Colbert Report is in the Android news world today after being interviewed by Google’s own Eric Schmidt. As I’m sure many of you know (or don’t) Colbert is known for his outrageous comedy and talks of politics, interviews with celebrities and more. Today however in a comedy skit Colbert takes a stop by Google‘s NY headquarters to be interviewed by Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, and it’s certainly worth a watch.

Screen Shot 2012-12-17 at 2.27.54 PM

We won’t be talking Android here too much, nor about his Super PAC, but instead about Stephen Colbert’s new book. For comedy sakes he takes some funny and laugh filled questions from Google employees as he and Schmidt try to keep a straight face, and it’s quite enjoyable. For those that watch The Colbert Report regularly this will be funny, for everyone else — he’s a little odd.

The video below is about an hour long, so you can enjoy it if you choose but the fun part here being that Eric Schmidt took a few opportunities to talk about Android, the Google Play Store, and bash Apple at the same time. Something we’ve been seeing from Schmidt a lot as of late. At times I wish he’d stop interrupting and trying to be funny, but he did quite well considering Colbert does this nightly. The good stuff starts about 8 minutes in.

Eric Schmidt mentioned “I should not turn this into an Android commercial,” but after a few moments he got his plugs in where possible. Schmidt used the moment to talk up Android over Apple, and that one rainforest company (Amazon). Stating Android is currently “five times bigger than the iPhone.” The funny interview was all about Stephen Colbert’s new book (don’t ask) but Google’s chairman took that moment to attack Apple too. Mentioning that offering his new book “in the Google Play Store people will actually be reading your book.”

They briefly made jokes about Android, Google, the Nexus 7 and a few other things so it certainly is worth a watch if you’re a fan of Android or The Colbert Report. Hit the links below to see everything Eric Schmidt’s had to say lately regarding Android and Apple.

[via AllThingsD]

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Samsung Mobile audio dock images leak before CES reveal

While speaker docking stations are nothing new, it looks like the folks from Samsung are preparing to release a few dual-speaker docking stations to accompany their popular Galaxy smartphones. Some new photos have leaked out, while a bit fuzzy, showing a Samsung branded speaker dock for their mobile devices that we could be seeing next month at CES.

docking

According to SamMobile these speaker docks are indeed coming soon, and should make the perfect companion for a Galaxy S III or Note II. Samsung’s new stylish audio dock ‘cubes’ come in silver, black, or red and will have multiple options for Galaxy smartphone and tablet owners.

You’ll be able to stream audio over Bluetooth, as usual, as well as 3.5mm headphone jack and there will also be a micro-usb port for charging as well. The report lists some mediocre audio output specs hitting about 6 watts. So enough to be as loud as your average TV to say the least. Here’s the full spec sheet that was leaked:

• USB Audio Class
• Universal dock station
• Bluetooth version 3.0
• Power: 6W (3W x 2)
• Power/volume button
• Charging Port
• 3.5mm Audio Plug-in

According to their sources, Samsung will be announcing these new speaker docks early this year, most likely at CES 2013 in Jaunary in Las Vegas. We could be waiting until later in February for an announcement, and these new dual-speaker docks are set to hit the market from Samsung in Q1 of 2013. Speaker docks come in all shapes and sizes, and now Samsung might be releasing one more soon. Who’s buying?

[via SamMobile]

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Schmidt once again toots the Android horn in interview with Stephen Colbert

Stephen Colbert is known for his often humorous interviews with celebrities, politicians, and authors on his show The Colbert Report, but the tables were turned when the TV personality made a recent trip to Google. Colbert was on the receiving end of a series of questions submitted by Google employees during an interview hosted by chairman Eric Schmidt.

While the majority of the hour-long interview focuses mostly on Colbert’s latest book, Schmidt managed to slip in a bit of good-natured boasting for his company’s Android platform and Google Play Store. Saying, “I should not turn this into an Android commercial,” Schmidt once again touted the mobile platform’s position as the world’s top mobile operating system. Noting that Android is currently “five times bigger than the iPhone”, he assured Colbert that this fact combined with his book’s availability on Google Play meant “people will actually read your book.”

Colbert, an open fan of Google, had a few suggestions for Schmidt, including a  tweak for the company’s Nexus 7 tablet. The Comedy Central host owns the N7 and requested that Google consider installing a physical volume button on the device. Schmidt had the perfect response. “That would cost extra.”

Most of the Android-related stuff, including a quip on Google Play being a competitor to the rainforest (or more specifically a competitor to an online retailer named after a rainforest) comes within the first 10 minutes, but if you are a fan of Colbert the whole video is worth a watch. Add in the always entertaining Schmidt and it makes for some can’t miss YouTube viewing.

[via AllThingsD]

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Apps of the Week: Ski & Snow Report, Christmas Countdown, Holo Lamp and more!

Apps of The Week

Welcome back to another edition of our Android Central app picks. We've only got a few more of these before the end of 2012, so we're hoping to make the most of 'em. It's the holiday season, so of course we've brought a couple of seasonal apps here — with a few of our usual great picks thrown in as well. Stick around after the break and see how we did this week.

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