Given the avalanche of new smartphones this fall, there’s a good chance that your data use is about spike as you put that fresh hardware through its paces. If so, AT&T might just have you covered. It’s running a promo between September 28th and October 31st that doubles the amount of data you get with its Mobile Share Value plans, whether or not you’re a new customer. Signing up for the special rates nets you up to a hefty 100GB per month of shared data at the high end. However, the starter offer is arguably the best — $130 per month (plus line fees) gets you 30GB to play with, which should hopefully accommodate your family’s Netflix viewing habits. AT&T’s deal isn’t necessarily as sweet as what you’ll get with Sprint or T-Mobile, which start at a respective $100 and $140 per month for roughly the same service. However, it’s competitive enough that it could keep you on Big Blue’s network for a little while longer.
Google have finally updated the Play Store listing for the Google Search app to match the app drawer labelling and new launcher icon.
The Play Store listing now lists the app as just ‘Google’ along with the refreshed icon. Order is restored in the unity of the Android operating system.
Small change, but notable nonetheless.
The post Google changes Google Search app name in Google Play Store appeared first on AndroidGuys.
It seems that Google is realizing more that Android is big, and that their apps are therefore big. With this in mind, they have updated their MADA (Mobile Application Distribution Agreement) for 2014, the agreement that manufacturers such as Samsung or Motorola sign in order to add Google’s suite of apps to their phones.
New requirements include things such as having 20 pre-installed Google apps in a folder on the home screen labeled “Google”, a Google search bar at the top of the home screen, making “OK Google” a hotword to wake the device for interaction (assuming the phone has this capability), making Google Search accessible by swiping up from the home button, and during boot-up the screen should display either a Google trademark or mention that the phone runs Android.
This may seem extreme, particularly considering Android is supposed to be “open”. There’s a distinction that needs to be made though: getting Android on a phone, and getting Android on a phone with Google’s suite of apps. Manufacturers could still place Android on their phones if they desired, just without Google Play or other Google apps (similarly to how Amazon uses Android).
What do you think? Should Google rein it in? Or do they have the right to ask as much from manufacturers, considering the above requirements arguable provide a better Android experience?
The post Google wants its presence felt even more on smartphones appeared first on AndroidGuys.
LG’s apparently gearing up to release a new smartwatch in the US other than the G Watch R — one that’s 3G-capable, just like Samsung’s Gear S. A document that’s just passed through the FCC points to an oval/rectangular LG smartwatch (57.7 x 35.5 mm) slightly smaller than the Gear S (58.3 x 39.8 mm) which comes with CDMA connectivity. Because of its codename (VC100) and the fact that it supports Verizon’s CDMA frequencies (according to the FCC docs), it might just land on Big Red if there’s a US launch. With 3G connection built into the watch, it can presumably work on its own — download apps, make phone calls, send messages and connect to the internet, among others — without being paired with a smartphone. It may take a while until the mysterious smartwatch comes out, though, seeing as LG’s answer to the Moto 360 isn’t even out in the US yet.
For those of you looking for premium build on a mid-range device, the Samsung Galaxy Alpha was probably music to your ears. However, for some people 4.7″ is not a big enough screen size. It appears that Samsung is coming to the rescue for those users thanks to a new leak from SamMobile. New details about Samsung’s next A series phone, the Galaxy A7, have been released by Zauba. According to the site, the A7 (or SM-A700 at it is referred to in the shipping listing) will feature a 5.5″ screen.
While this is sure to please many people, it has been previosly confirmed that the A7 will ship with a 720p display. This resolution is decent on the Alpha’s 4.7″ display, but 720p at 5.5″ will not provide a sharp display. However, it is still passable, and for those of you who are not obsessed with pixels, it should not be a problem.
Now comes pricing. The listing on Zauba shows a per unit cost of 12,474 rupees which comes out to around $200. This phone at that price would be fantastic, but SamMoblie is claiming that the phone could retail for up to $500. While $500 is not a bad price for a 5.5″ quality smartphone, there are definitely other alternatives with similar screen sizes that come in at less money. Other details provided by SamMobile on the Galaxy A7 include LTE support and dual SIM slots.
What are your first impressions of this new information on the Galaxy A7? Tell us in the comments!
Hey, Happy Saturday! Welcome to the first of an ongoing series of accessories round ups. The plan is to highlight at least five accessories to check out, but we’ll play loose with the number, especially if it pertains to different smartphones or tablets. Let’s jump right in!
The Glif is perfect for you if you have ever wanted to use your phone with a tripod. It has 2 purposes: it is a universal tripod mount, and you can use it as a kickstand. Its small and can be adjusted to fit any phone, even if the phone is in a case. It’s extremely portable, it comes with a keychain adapter so you can take it with you anywhere with your keys. The company, Studio Neat is from Austin,TX and the Glif is made in America. It can be found here on Amazon – The Glif.
Chargecard for Android
If you have ever been stuck somewhere and needed a micro-usb cable for your phone, this one is for you. The Chargecard is shaped like a card and is made to fit in either a wallet or purse. The name is slightly deceiving, this is not a portable charger as the name implies; this is just a compact USB cable that fits in your wallet for whenever you need it. The reason I included it is because I can’t tell you how many times, I have been stuck and needed a USB cable, this would have helped a lot. It can be found here- Chargecard.
I read about the Spiderpodium and thought of 1 thing: a holder for my phone in the car. I have had this problem in my car since I decided to get it back in March; I have nowhere to put it when I am in my car.
This accessory is one of the most versatile stands for a phone that I have ever seen. The stand has 8 flexible legs that can be arranged to grip and support your phone wherever you decide to put it. The are two different versions: one for the phone, and a bigger one for the tablet.
If you are in the market for some stereo bluetooth headphones, you should look at these strongly. I have owned a pair of these for about a year now, and they work unbelievably well. One of my favorite features is that it works with Google search on your phone, if you press one of the buttons on the device, it functions as if you just said “OK, Google” in the search app. They sound great, I haven’t had any issues with music or podcasts. Another of the cooler features is that these vibrate when receiving a call as well. Check them out at Amazon.
I love Otterbox cases! I have used an Otterbox case for almost every phone I’ve used for over 2 years. I started with nothing but Commuter cases, which are smaller than the Defender, and have a screen protector included in every package. The new Symmetry case has caught my attention. I love that they are smaller and lighter than the Commuter, and offer a great level of protection.
What I don’t like is that they don’t come with screen protectors. Maybe Otterbox will include them at some point in the future. You can find one of these cases for some of the newer phones. Check out one of these symmetry cases for some of the more popular Android phones: LG G3, HTC One M8, Samsung Galaxy S5.
Well, that’s all for this week! Let us know what you think about the accessories on the list. Also, let us know in the comments which accessories you want to see covered next!
Featured this week
The post For Your Consideration: mobile accessories to check out this weekend (Sept. 27) appeared first on AndroidGuys.
Google’s Nexus line has long stood as the company’s ideal vision of its widely adopted, open-source Android operating system. The devices, be they smartphones, tablets or even one-off media streamers, are built in conjunction with select hardware partners and represent an ideal marriage of tech specs with an unadulterated version of Android. It’s Google’s way of dealing with fragmentation (read: skinned versions) in the mobile OS market it created; a reference mark for manufacturers to aspire to, so to speak.
On the tail of the original Android handset’s sixth anniversary and in the run-up to whatever new Nexuses come next, we take a look back at the hardware path that’s been Google’s gold standard for Android.
When we took the Corvette Performance Data Recorder for a spin at CES this year we’d never have guessed that the system could cause a run-in with Johnny Law. As it turns out, the system’s audio recording feature that activates when the car’s put into valet mode doesn’t jive with privacy statutes in a handful of states. In fact, using it could be a felony depending where you live. Chevrolet, for its part, is apparently attempting to skirt any legal issues that may arise by notifying dealerships and giving them letters to pass out to customers. The correspondence alerts owners about the possible privacy issue, as noticed by Jalopnik when a sample was posted to Corvette Forum.
The letter to owners, embedded below and via CorvetteBlogger, urges them to not use the mode until a fix is implemented that would bring Chevy back on the right side of the law. Should you still want to use the feature, the Bow-tie Company advises owners to let the temporary driver know in advance. For now, we can think of at least two car-hops who’re probably ecstatic about this development.
[Image credit: Chevrolet]
Filed under: Transportation
We published a tip that would instantly speed up your Samsung Galaxy S4, and whilst the Galaxy S5 is no slouch the same tip applies to the new device and will have it lightning quick.
The tip will help speed up your Samsung Galaxy S5 and have it feeling brand new, and it’s as simple as having developer options enabled.
The little hack revolves around the animations applied to transitioning between windows and turning the device on or off. By simply turning this off, it contributes to making the device seem extremely snappy and fast.
First, you’ll need to enable the Developer Options hidden menu. To do this, go into Settings -> About Device and scroll down to “Build Number”. Now, tap on “Build Number” five times and you’ll see a notification saying that “Developer mode has been enabled”.
With that hidden menu now enabled, we can head on into it to begin fastening up our Samsung Galaxy S5.
- Head on in to Developer Options in Settings.
- Scroll down to the Drawing section.
- Of interest here is the Window Animation Scale, Transition Animation Scale, and Animator Duration Scale.
- Click on them individually to change the scale.
You are able to turn the animations off completely, or set them to 0.5x (default is 1x) so the animations will be double speed for those who would like to retain them.
You’ll notice your Samsung Galaxy S5 feels substantially quicker. Let us know your comments in the section below.
HTC’s GoPro competitor has leaked ahead of their upcoming October 8th event, in which we’re also likely to see HTC’s smartwatch (which has been killed and resurrected numerous times already).
The images show a device that has, what is rumoured to be, a 16-Megapixel camera, a 170-degree Super Wide Angle Lens, underwater shooting capabilities, and slow motion video capture.
Is there room for a competitor to GoPro? Drop us a comment in the section below.