More photographs of the Motorola DROID Bionic are made public

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

More-photographs-of-the-Motorola-DROID-Bionic-are-made-publict was January 5th when we first told you about the Motorola DROID Bionic. Back then, it was projected that Verizon would launch its first dual-core LTE handset in the beginning of the second quarter. Along with that story was a rendering of the device that captured everyone’s attention. Later in January, stories circulated that the model had a power management bug and at the end of April came the shocking story: the model was being pulled. But the very next day came the word from Motorola that the DROID Bionic was actually still going to be released, it would just be a different model.

After it was hinted that Motorola was replacing the Etna version of the Motorola DROID Bionic with the Targa variant of the device, we have seen a number of pictures that culminated with this past weekend’s potpourri of DROID Bonic snapshots. As we get closer to the possible September 8th launch, even more photos are disseminated including the series of four that you see below. The picture of the front clearly shows off the 4.3 inch qHD display and the 4G LTE icon on top, while the picture of the back lets you see the soft touch coating, the 8MP camera and the flash. The side shots are a bit blurry but let you see the volume rocker and the Micro HDMI and Micro USB ports.

Each day brings us closer to the expected September 8th launch and a possible show down with the Samsung Stratosphere, which we believe could be the Samsung Galaxy S II in disguise. All we need is the official introduction of these two handsets and it will be just like Ali-Frazier I all over again.

source: GottaBeMobile via AndroidCentral

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Phones

HTC Inspire 4G users grabbing some Gingerbread goodness via OTA update

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

HTC-Inspire-4G-users-grabbing-some-Gingerbread-goodness-via-OTA-updateThe owners of the HTC Inspire 4G are not only receiving an OTA update to Android 2.3, they are also getting some enhancements to their phone as well as some bug fixes. According to HTC, the update started last Thursday but is apparently picking up momentum now. The version of Gingerbread being installed on the phone is Android 2.3.3 which means no gTalk support for now.

Enhancements include updated features to the application tray, an update to FriendStream, added Quick Settings in the Notification
Window, improved power management functions and better media experience. Throw in the proverbial can of Raid to kill the bugs dead, and you have an outline of the changes coming with the update.

For a more detailed list of changes and to manually start the update if you’re too impatient to wait for the OTA one, visit the sourcelink. If you have already downloaded Android 2.3 on your HTC Inspire 4G, let us know what you think about Gingerbread and what changes you’ve noticed on your phone by dropping us a note in the Comments Box below.

source: HTCSupport via IntoMobile

The HTC Inspire is receiving an OTA upgrade to Android 2.3.3

The HTC Inspire is receiving an OTA upgrade to Android 2.3.3

Phones

T-Mobile Sidekick 4G is priced for free online until tomorrow; August 9th

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

T-Mobile-Sidekick-4G-is-priced-for-free-online-until-tomorrow-August-9th-TNAs if the T-Mobile Sidekick 4G’s initial coming out price of $99.99 on-contract wasn’t good enough from the carrier directly, they’re placing the messaging oriented Android smartphone on the chopping block for a limited time.

T-Mobile-Sidekick-4G-is-priced-for-free-online-until-tomorrow-August-9thSeeing that it’s part of their 48 hour sale, the T-Mobile Sidekick 4G can be picked up for the price of free through T-Mobile’s web site – but of course, you’ll need to digitally sign a 2-year agreement to get it at that price. However, it’s worth noting that this astonishing deal is only available until tomorrow; August 9th. In addition, the ridiculous temporary pricing is available to upgrade customers as well!
So there you have it folks, you need to think fast on your feet with this one before it flies by you. Well, if you’re  not down with signing contracts, you’ll be faced with having to pay $399.99 to pick it up outright – so doesn’t that contract pricing look mightily alluring?

source: T-Mobile via TmoNews

Phones

Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro goes on sale in the UK

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Sony-Ericsson-Xperia-mini-pro-goes-on-sale-in-the-UKGood news to anyone in the UK looking  for a cute and cuddly Android powered smartphone with a physical keyboard because the Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro is now finally for sale.

Sony-Ericsson-Xperia-mini-pro-goes-on-sale-in-the-UKObviously, affordability is something that this handset is oozing from every nook and cranny seeing that it can be picked up through either Carphone Warehouse or Mobiles.co.uk for the no payment required price of free on plans that start at $20 per month. Better yet, you can actually choose which carrier you want to have service with – and in this case, it’s Orange, T-Mobile, and Vodafone. For the price, it’s quite fitting seeing that its hardware specs aren’t all that mind-blowing, but it’s still one handset that you might find yourself getting along with very easily.
Sure it’s not going to beat out some of the titans in the industry right now, but nevertheless, we’re certain that it’ll win over people more with its killer combination of cuteness and awesome pricing.

via Unwired View

Phones

Phone usability study finds iPhone and WP7 easier than Android or BlackBerry

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Phone-usability-study-finds-iPhone-and-WP7-easier-than-Android-or-BlackBerryA new study by Professor Dennis Gallatta at the Harvard Human Factors in Design lab has tested which smartphone OS is the easiest to navigate for first time users. The study found that iPhone and Windows Phone 7 are easier to use than either Android or BlackBerry, but the testing was fairly limited, meaning the results may not be as reliable as one would hope.

Of course, we don’t want to become the official naysayers of all studies done in the mobile world, but when doing a usability study on smartphones, it seems a bit silly to limit the test to just 3 tasks: making a call, adding a contact, and sending a text. Those three tasks are probably the least likely tasks for a smartphone user to perform (or at least the first two of the three tasks), especially when there is music to hear, pictures to take, videos to watch, web pages to browse, e-mails to read, and Angry Birds to launch. At the very least, it seems that the study could have added purchasing an app from each platform’s app store, or performing a web search.

Each test was rated from 1 to 5 stars, 5 being that the task was very easily performed. iPhone and WP7 each had a total of 11 stars for the 3  tasks, followed by Android with 9, and BlackBerry with 8. Android was the only OS to score a perfect 5 on a task, and that was for making a call, although that was followed by a 1 in adding a contact. There should be a couple of notes made on the study as is: first, the Android phone used was an HTC device meaning it had the Sense UI, and didn’t include the Contacts app on the homescreen. Other UIs and phones include that on the homescreen which theoretically could have made this task easier to complete. Alternatively, in the sending a text task, the only user that didn’t have to initiate a new SMS was the iPhone user, who merely replied to an SMS (and seemingly didn’t know how to get back to the Messaging home screen.)

That said, it seems like the real winner may be Windows Phone, but as mentioned before, there is far more to using a smartphone than the 3 tasks covered here. And, the minimalist icons of Windows Phone did seem to lead to confusion, which may hurt overall usage. As always, UI usability could just be a matter of personal preference, with the exception of BlackBerry, which just needs a major overhaul. Of course, we’d need to see a more complete study to come to any real conclusions, but this was interesting nonetheless. Check out the full video below to see the fumbling noobs!

source: Human Factors via WMPU

Software

Google Search app for Android is updated and easier-to-use more than ever

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Google-Search-app-for-Android-is-updated-and-easier-to-use-more-than-everGoogle-Search-app-for-Android-is-updated-and-easier-to-use-more-than-everAs if the Google Search app isn’t already more than useful to millions of people around the world, but it’s being updated to offer an even easier-to-use experience – well that’s not too shabby, right?

Some might fathom how else they can innovate a web search app, but Google manages to tastefully update it enough to warrant some recognition. For starters, the new version is compatible to run on Android 2.2 and up devices, and packs along quite a few new features.

At its core, it features new search suggestions that are grouped according to the search type, and of course, web suggestions are placed prominently at the very top of the listing. Moreover, we find that search suggestions are categorized according to countries, there is a faster deletion for search history by executing a long press, and an updated interface that’s more attuned in actually helping you get results.

Naturally, Android users can update the app right now through the Android Market. Meanwhile, for those owners using a Bing-a-fied device can also download a fresh copy.

source: Google Mobile Blog via Phonescoop

Software

UFC TV app for Android brings you the latest fights and news onto your smartphone

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

UFC-TV-app-for-Android-brings-you-the-latest-fights-and-news-onto-your-smartphoneUFC-TV-app-for-Android-brings-you-the-latest-fights-and-news-on-your-smartphoneNot everyone can happily sit at a sports bar or at home with friends when the UFC decides to throw down one heck of a show, but if you find yourself outside of those two options, then you might find the UFC TV app for Android to be especially engaging.

That’s because the app gives you all the latest fights and news information regarding the UFC all in the palm of your hands! Essentially, you no longer need a super-sized high-definition TV to enjoy content since the app allows you to view live UFC fights, watch the weigh-in process, and even get a front seat at the post fight press conference.

In addition, if you’re sporting an Android device with HDMI out functionality, you can literally bring the fight to your living room television set – or anywhere else you please! In all honestly, it’s potentially the ultimate thing you’ll need if you’re a diehard UFC fan.

Of course, the app is available to download for free through the Android Market, but you’ll naturally need to pay to watch live and past fights – still, it’s something that might perk the interest of some people.

via Android Central

Software

Design flaw in Android could allow for malware to mimic legitimate apps

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Design-flaw-in-Android-could-allow-for-malware-to-mimic-legitimate-appsConvinced that your smartphone is immune to malware? Well, as long as you don’t download any apps coming from suspicious sources, then you are virtually safe, but the thing is that every single mobile platform has its own security flaws exposing your privacy at risk.

The latest vulnerability that was brought to our attention targets Android users, and although it has not caused any damage yet, it has the potential to give you quite a headache. It has been discovered that “a design flaw” in the Android operating system could allow for unwanted pop-ups to appear whenever a set application is running thus defiling your smartphone with annoying pop-ups. However, if executed properly, the flaw could potentially be used for phishing attacks to be targeted at your device.

In a nutshell, when the malware detects that your banking app or e-mail client, for example, is running, it can launch an identically-looking pop-up app asking for your credentials. What makes things worse is that the execution of the pop-up app can happen so fast that the user would probably never realize what has happened until it is too late. The malware could even install itself as a service and run seamlessly in the background even after the phone is rebooted.

There have been no registered cases of the so-called design flaw being used in a malicious way, but a proof-of-concept application has been demonstrated just recently at the DefCon hacking convention. That is why we have said it before and we will say it again – you should always be extra careful when downloading apps from any shady-looking software marketplaces as you never know what might be coming along with them.

source: CNET

Android OS

I’m Watch with limited Android functionality is coming to a wrist near you in November

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Im-Watch-with-limited-Android-functionality-is-coming-to-a-wrist-near-you-in-NovemberNeedless to say, there’s nothing like cool tech that oozes out plenty of novel features to capture just about anyone’s attention from afar, but there’s one that’s particularly more captivating since it fits conveniently on your wrist.

Actually, an Italian company called Blue Sky is aiming to perk up the attention of smartphone users with their Android-based “I’m Watch.” As you can probably infer from its name, it’s a cool looking watch that offers some limited Android functionality – yet, it doesn’t seem or sound as gimmicky as others in the past. Naturally, some people are going to be interested in a little toy like this one, especially when it’s starting price point is at 249 euros ($350), but you’re not going to treat it like one if you happen to pick up higher models that pack luxuries such as jewels, diamonds, and other faces.

Im-Watch-with-limited-Androind-functionality-is-coming-to-a-wrist-near-you-in-NovemberIn terms of functionality, it features a 1.54” touchscreen that allows for some limited tasks like sending text messages, accessing your email, and viewing photos. Also, its built-in 3.5mm headset jack will allow you to connect headphones and jam out to some tunes. And with Bluetooth on board, it allows just about any smartphone, even the iPhone, to connect to it – so that you can inconspicuously screen phone calls.
But seeing that it’s powered by a Freescale IMX233 processor with 64GB of memory, in addition to the 4GB of flash storage for content, it’s not going to be replacing any dedicated gadget any time soon. Nonetheless, it’s one accessory that we’re sure some people will appreciate. So if you’re in interested in one, you can place a pre-order now, but don’t expect to arrive soon seeing that Blue Sky intends to ship them out starting in November.
source: I’m Watch via The Droid Guy & PC Magazine

Uncategorized

Huawei Vision gets the spotlight in this promo video

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Posted on 09 August 2011 by AndroidArena

Huawei-Vision-gets-the-spotlight-in-this-promo-videoThe 3.7-inch Huawei Vision aims to bring the best of both worlds – stylish body flavored with Gingerbread on the software side and an affordable price tag. It’s not cutting edge in terms of pure specs and you wouldn’t expect this from Huawei just yet, but it covers all the bases and aims to make an entrance in cloud sharing with Huawei’s upcoming Cloud+ platform. The phone has now got its own promo video which depicts all the beauty of Huawei’s own 3D-esque interface running on top of Android 2.3, but it’s worth watching for one more reason – the refined looks of the handset.

Under the hood of the Huawei Vision, a Snapdragon chip roars in with 1GHz of clock speed, while 512MB of RAM back it up. In addition, the 5-megapixel LED flash-equipped shooter on the back is capable of recording 720p HD videos. In terms of connectivity, you’re also well covered with Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth, microUSB and support for microSD cards of up to 32 gigs.

The Shenzhen network equipment maker is set to make a strong stand with the Vision – it plans to sell more than a million devices when the phone starts shipping in September. The US launch date however wasn’t yet announced. Don’t expect this to be among the cheapest Androids though – with a price tag of no less than $305 off contract, it aims to compete with plenty of mid-range offerings. Does it have what it takes to succeed? The phone has just cleared the FCC, so it’s one step closer to getting released, but in the meantime feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

source: Huawei via GSM Arena

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