The Verizon-bound 4G-capable LG Revolution just got confirmed with an official release date of… May 26th, matching the numerous rumors. The price tag on Big Red’s third LTE-enabled smartphone stands at the hefty $249.99 with a two-year contract, but that’s not all that much of a surprise after the similarly specced HTC ThunderBolt arrived with the same price, while the Samsung DROID Charge pushed the boundaries with its $299.99 price tag.
The LG Revolution sports a single-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor clocked at 1GHz powering Android on a 4.3-inch WVGA screen. It houses a 5-megapixel auto-focus snapper with LED flash on the back and a 1.3MP camera up front. Interestingly, the Revolution will come with mobile hotspot functionality supporting up to 8 devices, which was launched as a trial with the ThunderBolt and is expected to turn into a paid feature come June 16th, but we have no information about whether users will have to pay to use it on the Revolution. In addition, the new 4G device will appeal to cinemaniacs with a pre-installed Netflix app. On the downside, however, it will come with Android 2.2 Froyo.
source: Verizon via ZDNet
T-Mobile’s After Hours sale has now finally been confirmed for today, kicking off at 9pm PT (12am ET) and going all the way to 3am PT (6am ET), but penny-saving night owls waiting for a huge deal on the dual-core T-Mobile G2x will be disappointed to find out that due to inventory issues the carrier has changed the featured devices in the last minute.
So finally, if you stay up longer you can get the good old T-Mobile G2 and the fresh full QWERTY Sidekick 4G for free with a new two-year agreement. The offer is not valid for upgrades, so you’ll have to opt for new lines of service to get the phones. Will this price cut be enough of an incentive to make you jump onto the T-Mo train?
source: T-Mobile (Twitter)
Pantech is trying to prove that there is still room for 5-inchers out there, and its new Pantech Vega No5 creation comes hot on the heels of the Pantech Vega Racer handset, and its 4.3″ display.
Specs on the Pantech Vega seem to be very similar to those of the Vega Racer – 1.5GHZ dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, same 480×800 pixels of resolution, 8MP camera doing its 1080p thing, 16GB of internal memory, and 14.4Mbps HSPA+ connectivity.
The large difference is, of course, added screen real estate with the inclusion of the 5″ LCD display. Call it a smartphone, a tablet, or a tabletphone, the Pantech Vega won’t get mad at you, but we are sure it is now looking at its Dell Streak brother for hints where to go from here.
It’s Korea-only for now, but you know how they say never say never. We are just curious about the Pantech Vega from a scientific standpoint, we wonder how long the battery is quoted for with dual-core 1.5GHz silicon inside, and a 5″ LCD display on the outside. Despite its large screen, the Dell Streak had a pretty good battery life, so we’ll be expecting at least that, though the two cores might get in the way.
Verizon’s Motorola DROID X is one of the most popular Android devices, but up until now DROID X users were stuck with earlier versions of Google’s platform. Now, Verizon has posted information about the upcoming update on its website, so it’s as official as it gets. The only thing that’s still missing is an exact release date.
The 4.3-inch Motorola DROID X will get a host of new features with Gingerbread including improved copy-paste, a download manager app and new user interface. The update, romantically referred to as 4.5.596.MB810.Verizon.en.US, will take up 112MB of space if your current version is 2.3.340.
Verizon has estimated an average 20 to 40 minute for downloading and up to 10 minutes for installing the update, but we would also add a word of caution for users with rooted devices, who could take their time until it’s confirmed that their device is fully compatible. Impatient folks can navigate to Settings > About phone > System updates > Download to see if the update has already appeared for download.
If you are one of the lucky owners of the first dedicated Android gaming handset, the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, you should be happy about the fact that SE makes whole on the promise to out some games for your handset before anyone else can play them.
Such is the case with Minecraft, the indie building game, which has more than 8 million registered users building amazing things with just simple blocks. Granted, it is very addictive, and the developers from Mojang state that updates for the Android version will be as frequent as for the desktop counterpart.
“When playing on smartphones you will have a different screen size compared to PC, different hardware, different attention spans and thus the game needs to be customized to fit the mobile specifications,” said from Mojang.
Therefore, Minecraft will be specifically coded to take advantage of the dedicated gamepad on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, which might mean we won’t see it soon on other Android devices, at least officially.
Is Minecraft exclusivity enough of an enticement for you to get the first specialized Android gaming handset? The first preorders are already shipping, and the handset becomes available on Verizon tomorrow.
The HTC ChaCha could be everything for the Facebook addict thanks to the handset’s dedicated Facebook button and now everything has got a price tag and a release date for the UK. The portrait QWERTY Android phone will ship on June 6th with a price of $339 plus VAT if purchased off-contract, according to retailer Clove.
The HTC ChaCha can already be pre-ordered on the other side of the pond and if you choose to get it with a carrier agreement of nearly $32 (£20) a month, the cost of the handset drops to zero. The handset is one of the most affordable ones made by HTC and sports a 2.6-inch screen and Android 2.3 Gingerbread, while under the hood a 600MHz processor runs coupled with 512MB of RAM.
It comes with a 5-megapixel camera on the back and a basic front-facing camera. But the focus of the handset is its support for the social network, including Facebook Chat. Is that enough to lure you into buying the ChaCha?
According to a report from Bloomberg, this Thursday Google will introduce a mobile payment system that will allow users of NFC enabled handsets to use their phone to make a payment at the cash register in lieu of cash or a credit card, or to redeem coupons. The latter is expected to grow from a $370 million business last year to a $6.53 billion business in 2014 according to Borrell Associates Inc. At first, the service will be available only on the Nexus S 4G available from Sprint, but will be made available for other NFC enabled handsets down the road. The Mountain View based company has already sent out invitations to a media event for this Thursday.
It is expected that Google will launch the service in five cities, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington D.C. Back in March, we reported that Google would be testing out an NFC mobile payment system in both New York and San Francisco, using the Google branded Nexus S.
According to Bloomberg, Google will be using hardware and software from VeriFone and ViVOtech for the project which faces competition from Apple, which is planning on bringing to market an NFC service of its own, and ISIS. The latter is a joint venture owned by AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile and is expected to launch in 2012 in two cities including Salt Lake City.
The technology behind Google’s offering, Near Field Communications, is a short-range wireless communications system that uses the 13.56MHz band and works at a range of 4cm or less. It is expected that the next build of the Android OS, Ice Cream Sandwich will be chock full of NFC functionality.
You might recall that we recently reported that speculation had centered on a May 26th launch date for the LG Revolution. One bit of new information that makes that date quite possible is that Verizon stores have been receiving promotional material for the phone including the dummy unit of the handset.
The phone will be Big Red’s third 4G enabled handset following the launch of the HTC ThunderBolt and the Samsung DROID Charge. Verizon has chosen to price its LTE phones $50 to $100 more than its high-end 3G models. For example, the Revolution is expected to launch at a price of $249.99 on contract, matching the ThunderBolt’s contract price tag. This is not much of a surprise considering that both units have a 1GHz single-core processor under the hood and are equipped with a 4.3 inch WVGA display. The DROID Charge was priced at $299.99 with a signed 2 year pact.
The Samsung DROID Charge was the last LTE flavored handset released by Verizon and as you might recall, there was a bit of a delay before the carrier finally got that model and the HTC ThunderBolt out the door. Some have felt that the reason why the Motorola DROID X2 and the upcoming DROID 3 are not LTE devices is because Big Red wanted to get those models out on time without any problems. And of course, the Motorola Etna (aka the DROID Bionic) was canceled partly because of problems getting the device to work on Verizon’s LTE pipeline. If the LG Revolution can launch on time, it would be a big boost to the carrier’s near term future with its 4G network.
Bad news for the root community: it looks as though HTC is taking the same lock-down approach as Motorola with the bootloader check on their new HTC EVO 3D. This means that root access, custom ROMs and custom kernels may never make it to the upcoming Android phone for Sprint.
Normally, when your Android device boots up, it will run a check of the bootloader, kernel, and recovery images to make sure each has the correct signature (authentication key). With a regular signature, it is fairly easy to sign a custom ROM or kernel and trick the device into accepting the custom image. These signatures can be copied from a full RUU (ROM Upgrade Utility) if one is available for the device.
Evo 3D to have locked down bootloader
Unfortunately, HTC is taking a page from Motorola and using cryptographically signed images, which use 256 bit encryption to protect the signatures. This was confirmed by Justin Case of Android Police. Essentially, this means that there is almost no chance of a crack coming through. We say “almost” no chance because there have been cryptographic signatures that have been cracked before, most notably the Sony PS3.
This same security can be found on the HTC Sensation, Motorola DROID 2 and DROID X, so don’t expect much in the way of custom ROMs, kernels or recovery on those devices either.
source: Android Police
The buzz surrounding the HTC Sensation is so loud that it can be easily mistaken for the sound of an angry swarm of African Bees. The handset is expected to bring its honey to T-Mobile on June 8th. Featuring a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor and a 4.3 inch qHD display, the HTC Sensation is equipped with an 8MP camera on back and a .3MP VGA shooter in front; the device has been mentioned in the same breath as one of this season’s hottest smartphones, the Samsung Galaxy S II.
June 8th is not that far away, but for those of you really locked-in to this device, it probably seems like eons until you get to hold this phone in your hand. Until the actual launch date, you have these photos to keep you satisfied until you get to feel the real Sensation. We recently reported that Target plans on offering the phone for $199.99 which gives us a good feel for how much the handset will cost when released by T-Mobile.