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5
Sep

So many great Android phones, but all bring low profits


motorola_moto_x_pure_edition_moto_maker_full_right_TAThe past few years, but especially this year have been really great for Android phones. We have the “does everything” LG G4, the elegant Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, even the brand new Sony Xperia Z5 Premium with the world’s first 4k display. However, even with all that, Android mobile profits are pretty low.

Analyst have gone through and checked over the latest quarter reports of all major phone makers to find that none of them sold more phones compared to the same quarter last year. A few like Sony are barely holding on, while others like HTC are almost broke.

The largest phone retailer, Samsung, is said to be making only $33 per phone now. That sounds super low, but is actually roughly double what any of the other guys are doing. Not that we want to mention their name, but Apple is really the only phone manufacture that is making large sums of cash. They are said to make around $185 off of each iPhone sold.

Mobile-industry-Q2-results

Source: The Overspill
Via: Phone Arena

Come comment on this article: So many great Android phones, but all bring low profits

5
Sep

‘Halo,’ ‘Destiny’ composer Marty O’Donnell wins lawsuit against Bungie


HaloFest for Xbox One

Developer Bungie’s former in-house composer Marty O’Donnell had his day in court and it’s time for Bungie to pay the piper. In addition to the initial payout of $142,500 he’s owed as a profit-sharing program, O’Donnell also gets to hold onto what VentureBeat describes as a “considerable” amount of stock in the company responsible first for Halo and now Destiny. As part of the terms, apparently unless O’Donnell gets permission he can’t publish any music from Destiny as his own without Bungie’s blessing. In June, O’Donnell revealed that he was starting a new studio with other game-industry vets, Highwire Games.

[Image credit: Matt Sayles/Invision/AP]

The bad blood between Bungie and O’Donnell started when O’Donnell composed all of the music for the Destiny series up front, and publisher Activision chose to not release it as standalone pieces. Previous Halo soundtracks, music scored by O’Donnell, have all been released for purchase in the past, and have been featured heavily in those games’ advertising and marketing. When Activision replaced the music for the game’s debut E3 2013 trailer with something other than O’Donnell’s, he was understandably miffed — something that lead to where we are today. There’s much, much more to this story and VentureBeat‘s write-up of the entire situation is incredibly comprehensive; you should definitely go check it out. If anything, this reveal clears up why Bungie’s strangely been leaning so heavily on classic Led Zeppelin tracks for its TV spots.

Filed under:
Gaming, Home Entertainment, HD

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Via:
NeoGAF

Source:
VentureBeat

Tags: bungie, composer, destiny, gaming, halo, hd, hdpostcross, lawsuit, martyodonnell, music

5
Sep

Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs LG G4 quick look


Sony just took the wraps off their latest flagship offerings, including one that is the first smartphone in the world to boast a display with a 4K resolution. Naturally, everyone will be curious to see how the latest high-end smartphone from Sony compares its flagship competition. Here is a quick look at the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs LG G4!

sony xperia z5 premium vs lg g4 aa 3

The first thing you will notice when comparing these two devices is how different they look from each other. As far as the design language is concerned, Sony doesn’t stray too far from their formula, with the Xperia Z5 Premium featuring a glass and metal build similar to its predecessors. Gone is the signature large, round, power button from before however, with the device now coming with a wider power button that still looks quite unique. The reason for this change is to accommodate the touch type fingerprint scanner that is now integrated into the power button.  In the short time I got to spend with the device, the fingerprint scanner seemed to be extremely fast and accurate, and the placement on the side actually makes a lot of sense.

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On the other hand, the LG G4 brings together the best design elements of their last two high-end offerings, the G Flex 2 and the LG G3, culminating into the LG G4, with its subtle curve to the display, that is more pronounced when turning over to the back, as well as the signature LG rear button layout. While the design isn’t a dramatic departure from the the company’s norm, what LG tried to do in terms of uniqueness is seen in the material options available for the rear panel. Available in a plastic backing with a ceramic finish, or in leather with a variety of color options, the LG G4 does have its own way of being a head turner.

sony xperia z5 premium vs lg g4 aa 1

Both devices feature 5.5-inch displays, but as impressive as the Quad HD resolution and resulting 534 ppi of the LG G4 may be, the big story here is the 4K display that the Xperia Z5 Premium features, resulting in a pixel density just north of 800 ppi. The debate of Full HD vs Quad HD can now be put to rest, with the argument now likely moving to Quad HD vs 4K. While the merits of such a high resolution on a mobile phone display will be hotly debated, and the effect on battery life is yet to be seen, there’s no denying that this one impressive screen. Of course, there isn’t a lot of content available to really take advantage of the 4K resolution, but Sony is going to upscale all the media content to give it a sharper look. We’ll have to wait and see how well this actually works until we give the Z5 Premium the full review treatment.

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Given that both smartphones are current generation high-end flagships, it’s no surprise that they feature the best that Qualcomm has to offer. The Xperia Z5 Premium comes with a Snapdragon 810, backed by the Adreno 430 GPU, while the LG G4 comes with a Snapdragon 808, backed by the Adreno 418 GPU, with both coming with 3 GB of RAM. The performance is as smooth as ever, with either device, and doing anything, from opening and closing apps, scrolling through various elements of the UI, to playing graphic-intensive games are handled easily, even though the hexacore processor of the of the LG G4 is considered the inferior of the two, it doesn’t really translate when it comes to real world performance.

sony xperia z5 premium aa 5

On the hardware front, both devices offer 32 GB of on-board storage, along with expandable storage, up to 128 GB and 200 GB for the G4 and Z5 Premium respectively. As far as any extras are concerned, the Z5 Premium now comes with a fingerprint scanner, integrated into the re-designed power button on the side. The button and scanner are ideally placed to make it easy to unlock the device using your thumb, and is quite a nice implementation, compared to the more traditional placements up front and on the back. Also available with the Xperia Z5 Premium is the staple Sony feature of the device being dust and waterproof, and comes with an IP68 rating.

On the battery front, the LG G4 packs a 3,000 mAh battery, which is also user replaceable. The battery life the device offers is decent, but not great, but you do have the option to carry around spares. You also get to take advantage of Quick Charge 2.0 fast charging capabilities if you do run of out juice. The Xperia Z5 Premium comes with a 3,430 mAh battery, that is non-removable, and we will have to wait and see what kind of drain having to power a 4K display will cause.

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In the case of the G4, a f/1.8 aperture package outshines the competition with a larger sensor over ones found in other flagships. OIS is also enhanced with a wider stabilization range. Color has been given a big focus, with LG adding in a color spectrum sensor found right next to the optics that will analyze the scene to help achieve the right white balance automati cally and accurately.The manual mode is another big story, as LG has put in all of the big features photographers get in full cameras – a full white balance gamut, a lot of ISO stops, manual focus, a histogram, and even the ability to shoot RAW and JPEG simultaneously. Overall, the LG G4 camera is one of the best in the business, and is certainly a very hard act to follow.

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What is also an exciting aspect of the latest Xperia flagship is the new camera, with Sony introducing a major change in this department after a very long time, and we are really looking forward to putting this 23 MP ExmorRS sensor to the test. The Xperia Z5 Premium also features one of the fastest auto-focus capabilities around, and the device did a great job in the short time we got to spend with it. Hopefully, the camera is able to deliver the quality that it seems to be promising, and we can’t wait to put it through its paces.

sony xperia z5 premium vs lg g4 aa 1

The Xperia Z5 Premium is running Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, with Sony’s Xperia UI on top. The UI has seen a slight change, and now features a brighter palette. There isn’t a lot of extra however, and the overall experience remains quite close to stock Android, with only standard Sony features like Small Apps and PlayStation integration returning. In software, the G4 comes with a very familiar user interface that hasn’t changed much, but an optimized processing package allows for lag and stutter to be kept at a minimum. Many of LGs features have been retained, ranging from the useful, like Knock Code and Multiwindow, to the not so useful, like Smart Bulletin and Smart Notice.

So there you have it for this quick look at the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs LG G4! The LG G4 is one of the best Android smartphones released this year, but with features like a fingerprint scanner, an upgraded camera package, and of course, the insane 4K resolution display, on top of staples like the IP68 rating for protection against dust and water, the Xperia Z5 Premium, at least on paper, seems to be the more compelling choice.

5
Sep

‘Star Wars’ BB-8 toy torn apart to see how it works


If your social feeds are anything like mine, they’re full of folks squeeing with delight over their new BB-8 droid today. The folks at uBreakiFix got one too, but instead of playing with Star Wars: The Force Awakens charmer, they cut it apart to see what makes the toy tick. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the little rascal operates on a gyroscope, pair of wheels and sizable counterweight to keep everything balanced inside its plastic case. Meanwhile, a magnet keeps the adorable android’s head attached to the spherical body. The video below is brief, but that won’t make it easier to watch for anyone who’s lusting after the $150 tie-in (and either can’t afford or find one) from a galaxy far, far away. I’m truly sorry.

Slideshow-315970

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Source:
uBreakiFix

Tags: bb8, droid, forcefriday, mobilepostcross, starwars, teardown, theforceawakens, toys, ubreakifix, video

5
Sep

Alcatel OneTouch introduces two new devices to stay life proof


If you were looking for a first cell phone for your child, what are the first things you’d want to look for? For me, I’d be looking at things like how easy will it break, how much will it cost. Your kids may be more concerned with how cool it looks and all the cool things they can do on it. Alcatel OneTouch is looking to tap into the concerns of you and your child with the Go Play, its new smartphone and Go Watch, it’s new smartwatch.

The Go Play and Go Watch are waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof. That means you can drowned your device up to 1 meter, get it dirty and drop it from up to 1.5 meters. The plastic bodies and IP67 rating will help the devices stay working flawlessly for all but the most clumsy of us. We’re not quite talking the Active line from Samsung, but not too bad.

The Go Play smartphone will feature a 5″ 720p display, Snapdragon 410 quad-core processor, 1 GB of ram and 8 GB of storage with an expandable micro SD card slot up to 32 GB. The front facing selfie camera checks in at 5 megapixels while the rear main shooter is a respectable 8 megapixels. The 2,500 mAh battery should net  you pretty good battery life since we’re not dealing with a pixel packed display or high performance, power hungry processor. It will come in 8 cool color combinations so your child can pick exactly what they like.

Alcatel OneTouch Go Play

The Go Watch is unfortunately not running Android Wear. However it will be compatible with both Android and iOS so it will work with most phones on the market (sorry Lumia fans). The watch has a 1.22″, 240×240 display which is slightly smaller and slighty less pixel dense than the popular Moto 360. Alcatel OneTouch says it will have a 2-5 day battery life depending how heavy a user you are and you’ll be able to get alerts like SMS, MMS and calendar notifications. The Go Watch will also have a number of color combinations to choose from, just like the Go Play smartphone.

ALCATEL ONETOUCH GO WATCH (PRNewsFoto/ALCATEL ONETOUCH)

We can’t imagine it will cost much more than the very affordable Idol 3 with these specs but Alcatel OneTouch hasn’t given us their plans for pricing or release dates but we’ll be sure to keep you updated. What do you think of this line of products? Is this something you would consider for your kid? What about buying one as a backup phone if the price is right? Let us know down in the comments.

Source: TalkAndroid

The post Alcatel OneTouch introduces two new devices to stay life proof appeared first on AndroidGuys.

5
Sep

US Cellular announces launch dates and pricing for the 9.7″ Samsung Galaxy Tab S2


US Cellular has announced that they will be carrying the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2, the 9.7″ tablet set to launch this month. If you’re unfamiliar with US Cellular, they’re the 5th biggest carrier in the United States. They’re headquartered in Chicago Illinois and serve 4.76 million people in 426 markets across 23 states.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 will come to the carrier on Friday, September 11th in stores and online. US Cellular will offer the Tab for $0 down which will translate to a payment of $27.50 for 24 months. Some quick back-of-the-napkin math puts the total price at $660 plus tax. Customers also have the option to pay off the Tab early if they so choose or pay up front. Qualified customers can add it to their Shared Connect plan for as little as $10 per month.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 front angle

“As more people turn to their tablet devices for work, entertainment and productivity, we want to make sure that we have the latest devices and a high-quality national network to keep them connected to everything they need,” “The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 is the perfect device for families, businesses and anyone looking to have a cutting-edge device that is great for both work and play.”

Joe Settimi, vice president of marketing for U.S. Cellular

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 will feature a 9.7″ 1536 x 2048 Super AMOLED screen which puts it at 264 ppi. It will launch with Android Lollipop 5.0.2 which is already a version behind the current release with Android 6.0 Marshmallow slated to be released in the next few months. Storage options are 32 GB and 64 GB with a micro SD card slot that can add up to another 128 GB of storage. There will be 3 GB of ram and it will be powered by a Samsung Exynos 5433 quad-core processor.

Source: US Cellular

The post US Cellular announces launch dates and pricing for the 9.7″ Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 appeared first on AndroidGuys.

5
Sep

Qualcomm president won’t be splitting the company to improve share values


Qualcomm_Logo_01_TA_CES_2014Qualcomm’s president, Derek Aberle, recently discussed the possibility of the company splitting up its chip division and licensing division into two separate companies to help improve share values. Long story short, Aberle doesn’t think that would be the best move for Qualcomm to make.

While Aberle does think that Qualcomm’s stock is undervalued, especially since it’s fallen 25% over the past year, but he believes that spinning off the chip division of the company is too simple of an approach and might not help. He also says that the company’s current structure is useful when helping Chinese customers expand into new markets.

Qualcomm announced cutbacks earlier this year, including laying off 15% of its workforce and reducing costs by about $1.4 billion, in an effort to bring its stock value back up. The Snapdragon 810 scandal certainly didn’t help matters, and losing a major customer like Samsung with the Galaxy S6 probably didn’t sit well, either. Still, Qualcomm is one of the biggest players in the market, so they’ve got plenty of time to turn things around and figure out a solution to undervalued stock before it becomes an emergency.

source: Reuters

Come comment on this article: Qualcomm president won’t be splitting the company to improve share values

5
Sep

Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs Samsung Galaxy Note 5 quick look


Sony took the wraps off of their latest flagship offerings at an event in Berlin, ahead of IFA 2015, and introduced to the world the first smartphone to feature a display with a 4K resolution. Naturally, you may be wondering how Sony’s latest high-end device fares against its direct competition. Here is a quick look at the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs Samsung Galaxy Note 5!

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The Xperia Z5 Premium looks and feels just like any other Sony device, being a clean, rectangular slab with a metal frame, and glass panels on the front and back. If you’re used to Sony smartphones, you will love the design of the Xperia Z5 Premium. It does feel great in the hand, with a very solid, substantial feel to it. The simplistic design certainly looks great, but is quite familiar at this point.

On the other hand, the Galaxy Note 5 comes with Samsung’s new premium design language first seen with the Galaxy S6, and now also features a metal and glass construction, similar to the Xperia Z5 Premium. The Galaxy Note 5 has more of a curve to it however, and is also thinner than the Xperia Z5 Premium, resulting in a handling experience that is better in the case of the former.

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Both devices are certainly premium but while the Galaxy Note 5 focuses on the luxurious, the Xperia Z5 Premium is definitely for the functional thanks to its water resistant abilities. A fingerprint sensor is certainly needed on a true high-end device and both devices tick this box. The Galaxy Note 5 houses it in the home button beneath the screen, while Sony have put it in the power button on the right. The scanner on the Galaxy Note 5 works as well as it should, but the placement of the sensor on the Sony device actually seems to make more sense. It also seems to be extremely accurate and fast, which is always good to see.

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Speaking of the screen, the Xperia Z5 Premium aims to steal the show, thanks to its incredible 4K display that touts an insane 806 ppi pixel density. This happens to be the first smartphone with a 4K resolution screen, and while the Galaxy Note 5 does have a Quad HD panel, it doesn’t hold a candle to the Z5 Premium, at least on paper. Samsung offers one of the best displays on the market and while the Super AMOLED panel on the Note 5 is impressive, the incredible density of the Z5 Premium screen makes for some amazingly crisp text, images, and video. It has to be said that the display of the Galaxy Note 5 is definitely brighter, which makes it a lot easier to see outdoors. Both these displays are absolutely fantastic for pretty much everything you may want to do on a smartphone.

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None of these devices are a slouch, and while Sony have packed the Xperia Z5 Premium with a 1.9 GHz octa-core Snapdragon 810 processor and 3GB of RAM, Samsung have stuck their own Exynos 7420 inside the Galaxy Note 5, along with 4GB of RAM. Both devices are quick, snappy, and responsive and whichever you choose, you should have no performance worries.

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Like other flagships, both devices come packed with a full set of components to keep the experience pristine. The Xperia Z5 Premium comes with 32 GB of internal storage and a microSD card slot, while the Galaxy Note 5 comes with either 32 GB or 64 GB of storage, but no microSD expansion, so Sony definitely wins out here if expandable storage is a must have for you. Both have all the usual connectivity standards and come with NFC, while the Note 5 is also compatible with the Samsung Pay mobile payment standard and comes with the S-Pen stylus, to take advantage of features like Air Command to create memos, crop images, create screen grabs, and also write on whatever may be on the screen.

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A flagship isn’t a flagship without an impressive camera, and while we haven’t tested the Xperia Z5 Premium camera, we’re betting it’s impressive, considering Sony’s track record when it comes to cameras. The Note 5 packs a 16MP sensor with OIS and, as covered in our review, it is a great camera. The Xperia Z5 Premium comes with Sony’s new 23MP Exmor RS sensor with super fast phase detection auto focus, steady shot stabilization and a 23 mm wide angle f/2.0 G Lens. Up front, both devices have 5 MP front facing shooters which should be good enough for most of your needs.

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With all those power-hungry specs and advanced functions, both smartphones need large enough batteries to handle whatever you throw at it. The Note 5 comes with a 3,000 mAh non-removable battery that is mostly impressive, while Sony has packed a large 3,430 mAh battery inside the Xperia Z5 Premium. Sony swears the Xperia Z5 Premium will provide 2 days of usage on a single charge, but we’ll certainly have to wait to see what kind of effect this high resolution display will have on the battery life. If that claim does end up being true, the Xperia Z5 Premium will have the edge over the Galaxy Note 5, which typically lasts just a little more than a day.

sony xperia z5 premium vs galaxy Note 5 aa 1

In terms of software, the Xperia Z5 Premium and the Galaxy Note 5 are running Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, but their respective takes on the user interface result in experiences that are very different. The Sony device features a close to stock Android experience with its Xperia UI, which doesn’t really add too much to Lollipop. A lot of the Material Design elements can be seen here, but there some staple Sony software features that return here, such as Small Apps, and the PlayStation integration. The TouchWiz UI seen with the Galaxy Note 5 has been cleaned up quite a bit by Samsung this year, with a lot less bloatware and unnecessary features. The device does pack quite a bit into the software experience, mostly because of the S-Pen stylus and all that it is capable of.

So there you have it for this quick look at the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs Samsung Galaxy Note 5! The Xperia Z5 Premium is Sony’s way of going all out, but the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, with its sleek new design, fantastic performance, and improved features, is certainly not making the competition easy for the Sony flagship.

5
Sep

LG G4 Note rumors gain momentum; Possible date leaked


Earlier this week we told you about LG claiming the “G4 Note” trademark and now we’re seeing a brand new LG phone pass through TENAA which is China’s certification arm. Now we may be getting a possible release date too. While officials have already confirmed we will see a new LG flagship in Q4 of 2015, during a briefing apparently a loose lipped employee let it be known that October 10th would be the date.

During the briefing no specific device was mentioned but we’ve seen a ton of rumors of a G4 Pro or G4 Note to feel confident that this will be device that will be announced or released in October. LG has been on a two flagship per year release cycle just like Sony and Samsung but this would be the third flagship phone this year for the Korean giants. So far this year we’ve already seen releases of the G4 and G Flex 2 but the G Flex 2 bombed pretty hard and LG may be looking to reclaim some of the sales they’re losing in the later part of the year to Samsung with the redesigned Note 5.

LG G4 Note TENAAWe don’t have locked down specs for the LG G4 Note yet but in the pictures from TENAA we can see that the newest flagship will maintain the laser autofocus from the G4. It’s too early for the Snapdragon 820 to be released, 2016 seems more likely, so we’ll probably see a Snapdragon 808 just like the in the G4.

If the G4 Note keeps the rest of the internals from the G4 then we’ll see a Snapdragon 808 with 3 gigs of ram, 32 gigs of storage with a removable battery and micro SD card.  With rival Samsung dropping the battery and expandable storage options, this could be a huge win for LG with disgruntled Note owners looking for an upgrade. There doesn’t appear to be a curved back like the G4 with these pictures showing a much thinner device.

Reports from March out of Korea had mentioned a 5.5″ 3K display might be included. LG was the first to release a phone with a QHD screen with last year’s LG G3 and we’ve already seen a 4K screen on the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium so these rumors might not be as farfetched as they would have seemed to be 6 months ago.

Source: AndroidAuthority via GforGames

 

The post LG G4 Note rumors gain momentum; Possible date leaked appeared first on AndroidGuys.

5
Sep

Play ‘Evolve’ free this weekend on Xbox One and PC


Wondering what to do with your three day weekend? Turtle Rock Studios is hoping you’ll (re)visit its co-op shooter Evolve, courtesy of a few days of free access on Xbox One and PC. Even if you already own it, it may be time to knock the dust off because besides the flood of players, it’s unlocking all the DLC for you to try, and just permanently unlocked a new monster, the Meteor Goliath. Thanks to its 4-on-1, primarily multiplayer setup, having a strong base of online players is key, and this is one way to try and refresh the ranks. The free preview is already under way, wrapping up on the 7th, at 11:59PM PT on Xbox One, and at 10AM PT on PC.

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Source:
Evolve Blog

Tags: 2K, Evolve, hdpostcross, microsoft, PC, TurtleRockStudios, XboxOne

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