Content of third event in three weeks unknown
US wireless carrier T-Mobile and mercurial CEO John Legere have scheduled a new "Uncarrier" event for September 10. It is unknown what will be discussed at the event that the company has tagged with "this time it's personal," but formal introductions of new services and other carrier initiatives are probable.
Wi-Fi calling international update added to Samsung Galaxy S4 with Sprint Spark
Sprint is updating its Wi-Fi calling service so that it can be used abroad at no charge. The carrier is allowing users of specific smartphones compatible with the service to make calls over Wi-Fi instead of a local mobile phone network while roaming, with calls made to the United States, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico provided at no extra charge, and without using any call allowances.
Two smartphones, one smaller Xperia tablet expected for Sony IFA event
Sony is starting to tease devices it is planning to show at IFA next week, with a video trailer hinting that there will be three items revealed. The video, heavily referring to the number three throughout, could be pointing to the launch of the Xperia Z3, the Xperia Z3 Compact, and a tablet which could end up being the Z3 Tablet Compact.
Rapid laser-based focusing from LG G3 reused in South Korea-bound Gx2
LG has launched its fourth smartphone for the month, following the L Bello, L Fino, and G3 Stylus. The LG Gx2 is another large-screened device that combines the styling of the LG G3 with lower specifications, though the smartphone uses the same laser autofocus system as its flagship counterpart combined with a lower-resolution 8-megapixel rear camera for quicker focusing.
OnePlus One looks set to cause a major headache for the likes of Samsung
OnePlus is an ambitious new OEM out of China founded in late 2013 with designs on conquering the smartphone market. Its first handset is the audacious OnePlus One, which recently started shipping to the US and select European markets. Interestingly, instead of jumping into the market with a 5-inch smartphone, the company's first effort is a 5.5-inch phablet that it is marketing as a 'Flagship Killer.' With its intentions clear, is it possible for a company to come from out of almost nowhere to steal the title of most wanted Android phone from the likes of tech titans like Samsung?
HTC Desire 510 includes Snapdragon 410 capable of 32-bit, 64-bit processing
HTC has launched an entry-level Desire-branded smartphone capable of 64-bit processing. The Desire 510 uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, a quad-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz, and though it will initially run as a 32-bit processor initially, HTC may enable its 64-bit processing once Android L starts to roll out to consumer devices in the future.
First Amazon smartphone sales speculated as underwhelming
Amazon may not have made as much of an impact with its first smartphone than initially thought, according to a report. Using data from Chitika's advertising network and ComScore figures, it is suggested that the online retailer may have sold fewer than 35,000 units of the Fire Phone, an underwhelming figure when compared to the hype.
Website authentication could be new fingerprint function for Galaxy Note 4
The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 could use the same fingerprint sensor as the flagship Galaxy S5, according to rumors. Details of the alleged additional feature to the smartphone line surfaces at the same time as Samsung tries to hype up its Unpacked event for IFA on September 3, by showing off the device's S Pen stylus in a teaser video.
Shuffle play mode now available for Windows Phone 8.1, free version supported by ads
Subscripiton music streaming service Spotify has announced that it is bringing its free listening experience to Windows Phones beginning today. In today's software update, owners of phones like the Nokia Lumia 920 or the HTC One (M8) for Windows can now partake in the Spotify experience, with a few limitations. As with the expansion into a free version for Android and iOS in December, the offering is supported by in-app advertising.
Tablets added to T-Mobile Simple Choice plan gains same data allocation as smartphone
T-Mobile has announced its second set of price plan changes in as many days. The carrier is extending the line capacity of its Simple Choice plans from five lines to a maximum of ten per account, while a new scheme will provide tablets added to a Simple Choice plan the same amount of LTE data as allocated to smartphones on the same account.
Verizon VoLTE service includes switching between HD Voice, video calling
Verizon Wireless is gearing up to roll out its Voice over LTE (VoLTE) service over its cellular network. Its planned service will be going live over the next few weeks, with the higher-quality HD Voice calling accompanied by a simplified video calling service built directly into the phone dialer, allowing users to seamlessly switch between voice-only and video calls.
LG G3 Stylus adds stylus to lower-specification G3 Beat
LG is going after Samsung's Galaxy Note line, by launching a stylus-equipped smartphone modeled on the LG G3. Revealed before IFA, the LG G3 Stylus takes after the G3 Beat by offering a large 960x540 5.5-inch display, a similar design, and lower specifications compared to the flagship device, though this time LG adds its Rubberidium stylus to the smartphone.
Senate passed the bill earlier this month, office announces bill signed today
The office of California Governor Jerry Brown announced that bill SB 962 was signed today, making cell phone "kill switches" mandatory in the state. While the bill won't go into effect immediately, manufacturers must have the kill switches in place for all smartphones made after July 1, 2015. It was widely believed that Governor Brown would sign the bill after it was sent to his office after passing through the Senate on August 12.
Huawei has no choice but to use Android with smartphones, states CEO Yu
Tizen has "no chance to be successful" in the face of Android and iOS, the CEO of Huawei's Consumer Business Group has claimed. Richard Yu advised in an interview that the company has no plans to work with Tizen in the future, despite Huawei having already spent money on research and development for the operating system, one that Samsung is still hoping to have success with.
T-Mobile adds 2GB LTE option to Simple Starter price plan
T-Mobile is giving customers using its Simple Starter price plan the choice of adding more data. From September 3rd, subscribers can opt to quadruple the LTE data allowance on the single-line plan from 500GB to 2GB, increasing the cost of the plan from $40 to $45, but retaining the same unlimited calls and texts as the original plan. Just as before Simple Starter users will find their data service suspended once they've used their allocation.
Ruling could have affected outcome of second Apple-Samsung trial
US Federal District Court Judge Lucy Koh has denied Samsung's post-trial request to invalidate two Apple patents, both of which were used successfully to convict Samsung of copying the iPhone maker's technology yet again in the second federal Apple-Samsung trial, held earlier this year. Samsung had filed the motion in early July, based on a recent Supreme Court decision, Alice vs. CLS Banks, which stated that software ideas that were just abstract representations of real-world concepts (such as turning a doorknob) were not patentable.
Square-screened device design document discovered, leaked
A design document detailing specifications of BlackBerry's new Passport phone has been leaked, confirming some previous rumors. The new BB10 phone from the Canadian manufacturer features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 with a 2.2Ghz quad-core CPU, paired with an Adreno 330 GPU running at 450Mhz -- a significant upgrade over the company's flagship phone, the Z10.
Few changes made to design of Moto X successor
Motorola's upcoming successor to the Moto X has apparently leaked again in new images. The media photographs of what is believed to be the Moto X+1 show both sides of the smartphone's black and white models, and while one has a generic black back cover, the other is shown using a wood-effect version, complete with a prominent Motorola logo.
Unlimited plan follows on new family sharing plan, contrasts savings against T-Mobile
With the exit of Dan Hesse and the appointment of CEO Marcelo Claure earlier in the month, Sprint is kicking into a new gear with a clutch of new offerings. Following on a new family plan structure, including a $100 plan with up to 10 lines and 40 GB of data, Sprint announced a new single-line plan that offers unlimited text, talk and data for $60 per month. The new plan follows on previous reports that a similar plan was in the works for $50 a month.
Company complies with only half of judge's controversial order
Following a ruling by a Brazilian judge that anonymous social apps such as Secret violate the Brazilian constitution, Apple has removed the program from the App Store in that country, citing that its own guidelines require that apps comply with local laws in the country they're sold in. In addition to Apple, the judge ordered Google and Microsoft to also remove the app or similar apps. There has not, however, been any reports of Apple or the other companies remotely deleting the app from users' devices.
Update brings FireOS version 3.5.1, improves battery and ability to create folders
Amazon announced that it is pushing out the first major update for the company's new smartphone, the Fire Phone. The update will be delivered over-the-air for early adopters on AT&T, bringing with it a number of improvements and changes that are said to give the phone better battery life, video sharing and make navigation easier. The update pushes FireOS to version 3.5.1.
L Bello, L Fino smartphones use LG rear key design
LG has launched a pair of mobile devices aimed at first-time smartphone owners and emerging markets. The L Bello and the L Fino are 3G smartphones using the same rear-key design as other LG releases, such as the LG G3, with the two offering mid-range specifications, quad-core processors, and a rear-facing 8-megapixel camera.
New store has to deal with complexities of multiple carriers, hardware vendors
[/strong]Updated with Verizon statement[/strong] Verizon is allegedly in discussions with other carriers and Android device manufacturers to launch its own app store. According to sources familiar with the matter, the carrier is building up the store, similar to the shuttered V Cast, as a response to reductions in revenue-sharing arrangements with Google through the Google Play store. Verizon has since denied the claims, without providing much information about the report.
Mid-range specifications, 13MP camera included in US ZTE smartphone
ZTE has unveiled a new mid-range smartphone it will be shipping to the United States. The Nubia 5S mini LTE, originally launched in China late last year, offers a 4.7-inch 720p IGZO display, backed by a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor, Adreno 305 graphics, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage with microSD expansion also available.
Sprint launches Sharp Aquos Crystal with slim bezel design
Sprint has confirmed it will carry the recently-announced Sharp Aquos Crystal smartphone on its network. Boasting a 5-inch 720p display with minimal bezel and mid-ranged specifications, Sprint will be selling the Aquos Crystal for $240 off-contract and $10 per month under Easy Pay, while the prepaid brand Boost and Virgin will both offer it for $150. Sprint did not advise of when the Aquos Crystal will be available, but the Japanese launch earlier this week points to a release on August 29th.
Independent tester finds that Verizon beats out all other carriers for first half of 2014
A new study of wireless carriers for the first half emerged today, putting Verizon at the top of the pile in five categories, marking it as the best overall carrier in the United States. Market research firm RootMetrics announced its findings, showing that Verizon was the best carrier in reliability, speed, data performance and call performance.
Windows Phone version of HTC One M8 uses same specifications as Android original
HTC has launched the Windows Phone version of its One M8 flagship at an event in New York. The HTC One (M8) for Windows is a metal-clad smartphone with the same specifications as the Android original, including an identical five-inch 1080p display, quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor clocked at 2.3GHz, 2GB of RAM, and 32GB of expandable storage.
Limited-time plan offers up to 10 lines, bonus 2GB per line on promo 20GB plan
On top of a new single-line plan from Verizon today, Sprint has announced its new Family Share Pack, offering adjustable data caps to share across 10 lines in a single plan. Sprint's new plan also comes with a bonus for its 20GB tier, as the company is offering an additional 2GB per line on the plan as a part of its "new day for data" campaign.
Gazelle offers locked price for selling iPhone before new release
Gazelle, a company which focuses on buying used phones, has announced a limited offer on locking-in the current selling value of an iPhone. Until September 9, Gazelle will give customers who wish to sell their current iPhone a locked price value, allowing the sellers until October 10 to send the device in. The purpose of this promotion is to maintain the same price value for a phone to be traded in, even after the anticipated release of the iPhone 6, which will inevitably decrease the value of iPhones currently owned. Once Gazelle receives a traded-in device, it is inspected to verify the claimed condition, and a payment is then sent within one week. Gazelle accepts smartphones from AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and other major cell phone carriers, in addition to Apple products.
New More Everything comes with $15 overage charges, requires new activation or upgrade
US cellular provider Verizon announced a revised offering today in an attempt to be competitive with data in the mobile market. Under the new plan, Verizon customers will be getting a discounted rate for a single-line account, while gaining an additional 1GB of data per month for two years, along with unlimited talk and text for a single phone line.
Slim-bezel Sharp Aquos Crystal may arrive in United States tomorrow
Sharp has created two new Aquos smartphones with an extremely minimal bezel, giving the appearance of an edge-to-edge display. The Aquos Crystal and the Aquos Crystal X, with respective 5-inch 720p and a 5.5-inch 1080p displays, will both be going on sale in Japan, with at least one of the devices heading to the United States in the near future.
Accessory manual reveals name of upcoming Sony Xperia tablet
Sony may have confirmed the existence of a new Xperia tablet in support documentation. The Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is refereed to by name in a user guide for the BSC10 Bluetooth Speaker with Magnetic Charging Pad, suggesting the company will be going for a smaller tablet as a follow-up to the Xperia Z2 Tablet, launched earlier this year.
HTC One M8 for Windows Phone shares physical appearance with Android model
Images for what is believed to be the Windows Phone equivalent of the HTC One M8 have leaked, showing what could be HTC's latest foray onto the platform. Said to be called the One M8 for Windows, the displayed smartphone appears to be identical in physical construction to the Android version of the device, except for a Windows Phone logo on the back.
Blackberry launches 1.1 version of BBM for Windows Phone
BlackBerry has officially released BBM for Windows Phone, taking it out of beta. The new release implementes a number of bug fixes and speed improvements that the company gathered during the beta phase. The 1.1 version of the app allows users to engage in BBM Chats with one or many contacts, with the ability to share pictures, voice notes, contacts and location. Features like BBM Voice, Channels, and location sharing are still yet to be added.
Plans being tested involve changes to Sprint Framily, $50 unlimited plan
Sprint is allegedly testing a suite of price plans for potential launch in the near future, not long after Marcelo Claure took to the Chief Executive Officer position. The new plans being trialled are apparently aggressive, partly to fend off T-Mobile and to recoup its haemorrhaging customer base, with one plan said to offer unlimited voice, text, and data for $50 per month.
LTE-based broadcasting system due on AT&T next year
AT&T is expecting to start rolling out its LTE Broadcast system next year, an executive has revealed. Also called LTE Multicast, the system would allow AT&T the ability to broadcast one set of content, such as a TV channel or some other form of video content, to multiple subscribers simultaneously, a system which in theory could help AT&T efficiently conserve its network resources.
Invitation depicts four devices, suggesting multiple Motorola launches
Motorola is preparing to hold an event in Chicago on September 4th, according to invitations sent to members of the media. Though light on detail, the invitation depicts an animated paper fortune teller showing four images, suggesting the smartphone producer could potentially have four devices launching at the event at the same time.
Specifications list claims Galaxy Note 4 has 5.7-inch 1440x2560 display
Specifications for the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 4 may have leaked, weeks before its expected launch. An Indonesian smartphone retailer called erafone has listed the device on its store pages, including what appears to be a complete breakdown of the Note 4's specifications list, and a price tag of what equates to around $810 off-contract.
P2P file-sharing, unofficial tethering both violations of the terms of plans
On the heels of Verizon's announcement that it will periodically throttle the LTE speeds of its most prodigious users during times of network congestion, a leak from T-Mobile has revealed a similar program -- but with a different approach. Rather than targeting a certain percentage of the heaviest users without discrimination, the carrier plans to first educate and then restrict the speeds of only those users who are in violation of the terms and conditions of the "unlimited' data plans through torrenting or tethering abuse.
Hashtags, new profile options, links and a subscription service added to messaging app
Early this week, the ubiquitous messaging app Yo received an update that moves it beyond the single-word phrase that made it popular. In the 1.1.0 version of the free application, new profile options, links, a subscription service and hashtags were all added to give Yo some more communication options and perhaps more appeal.
Metal Samsung Galaxy Alpha uses 4.7-inch 720p Super AMOLED display
Samsung has unexpectedly launched the Galaxy Alpha smartphone, weeks before an Unpacked launch event. The rumored smartphone has been revealed as using a metal frame with a soft back cover, a change from the heavily use of plastic in earlier Galaxy devices, with the Alpha's 7mm (0.28-inch) thickness making it one of the slimmest Galaxy smartphones the company has ever produced.
Squarespace releases Blog and Note apps for Android
Website design platform Squarespace has released two new apps in beta format for Android users today, entitled Blog and Note. Originally launched for iOS, Blog facilitates Squarespace site management from a smartphone or tablet, and Note is a minimalist note-taking app.
Device hacked enabling root access, SecureCircle apps unaffected
The "super-secure" Android Blackphone has been hacked by an attendee at the DefCon conference. In less than five minutes, the Google-backed device surrendered root access without unlocking the Android bootloader. Initially contested by the manufacturer, the company, Geeksphone, later thanked "Justin Case" for pointing out the flaw.
Flat rate for calls in upcoming T-Mobile prepaid service changes
T-Mobile will be launching changes to its prepaid service on August 17th, it has revealed. The new Pay as You Go plans aim to be simpler to understand and more affordable than earlier prepaid offerings, by providing a flat rate for texts and talk of 10 cents per message or minute, with customers required to use a minimum of $3 on the service each month.
Brown likely to sign into law; iOS devices are already compliant
The California state Senate has passed a bill requiring cellphone manufacturers to implement, and providers to activate, a "kill switch" that can be triggered remotely in the case of theft that renders the phone inoperable and unable to be reactivated. Owners of the iPhone are long familiar with these abilities, as Apple has offered them as opt-in features for some time, but the requirement that it be activated when users sign up for service will be new to many.
Clear Image function in OnePlus One camera app creates composite from ten photographs
OnePlus has started to roll out an over-the-air update to the OnePlus One smartphone, upgrading the device to Android 4.4.4. The staggered rollout, which should reach all device owners by the end of this week, fixes a number of bugs in the firmware and updates Android itself to a more recent version, as well as introducing a new function to the camera app called Clear Image.
Square register service adds appointment booking feature
Square has announced today that the register service has added an appointments feature. Square Appointments aims to manage users' appointments, and is available to all business owners -- even those who do not use Square Register -- for a free 30-day trial. Users of Appointments can request to create a booking through a web form that automatically adds itself to the shop's calendar. Pricing for the service is $30 per month for individual sellers, $50 for business owners with two to five employees, and $90 for unlimited staff usage.
Twin leaks point to two HTC smartphone launches in coming months
A pair of leaks for HTC smartphones have surfaced, for Android and Windows Phone devices. One leak includes photographs of the A11, a variant in the Desire range said to use a 64-bit system-on-chip, while another appears to reiterate earlier rumored specifications for a version of the HTC One M8 running on Windows Phone instead of Android.
Microsoft continues creating low-cost mobile phones for emerging markets
After announcing a move away from its Android and Asha ranges, Microsoft's mobile phone arm has surprisingly launched another low-cost mobile phone. Following in the footsteps of the Nokia 105 and the Nokia 108, the Nokia 130 is a Series 30 device with basic functionality, which the company is pitching as a mobile phone for first time users, priced at 19 euro ($25) for both the single and dual-SIM models.
Philips' 28-inch 4K Ultra HD monitor now available
Philips has announced the availability of its new 28-inch 4K Ultra HD display, offering 1080p Full HD video quality. The model (288P6LJEB) is ideal for use while gaming due to its high resolution of 3840 x 1260 pixels, with a color depth of 1.07 billion colors. Its Multi-View functionality enables users to work with multiple devices like a PC and laptop simultaneously. The UltraClear display is equipped with HMDI, DisplayPort, Dual-Link DVI and VGA SmartConnect ports, as well as USB 3.0 connectivity. Priced at $600, the display is now available for purchase online.