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On September 16, the floodgates will open at Motorola. The company’s full range of 2014 devices will up for pre-order. This includes the Moto X (2014), Moto Hint, and Motorola Turbo Charger. The aforementioned devices have yet to be given a release date. For the Moto X, the AT&T version and the Pure Edition will be the only choices. Other carrier versions will come at a later date just like last year’s device. Motorola has 12:00pm ET (or 11:00am CT) for pre-orders.

This date will also see the return of the Moto 360. Motorola is restocking its Android Wear smartwatch with a limited quantity being available. Getting your hands on one will be quite difficult as plenty of other retailers have sold out of the Moto 360 upon its launch. A limited quantity and rush of prospective buyers is surely going to make the Moto 360 go unavailable quickly.

Do you plan on purchasing any of these Motorola devices? Let us know in the comments.

Source: Motorola

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HTC One (M8) ‘Eye’ said to have a 13MP Duo Camera setup, different from the HTC Eye

Posted by wicked September - 13 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

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There have been many rumors regarding what HTC’s next step will be. This fall, it was believed that both new handsets and a smartwatch were coming; however, those plans were scrapped. The only thing seemingly arriving in the coming months is whatever HTC has in store on October 8 in New York City. There, it is believed that the company will introduce a GoPro-like camera and perhaps the HTC Eye.

We are now learning that the HTC Eye is indeed a separate handset from the HTC One (M8) ‘Eye’ that surfaced on Friday. The One (M8) ‘Eye’ is identical to the existing One (M8), but it features a 13MP Duo Camera setup. This is a bump up from the 4-ultrapixel camera on the One (M8). The source maintains that the HTC Eye is still “the ultimate selfie phone.”

Source @upleaks (1) (2)

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Specs for Samsung SM-A300 Appear Online

Posted by wicked September - 13 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

sm-a300-specificationsSamsung has three new devices coming through the pipes due for release soon, apparently set up with the same design as the Galaxy Alpha. Unlike the Alpha, it seems that these three devices are not high end, or at least the SM-A300 isn’t. Today the device appeared on GFXBench, and sports low-end specs. The quad core 1.2 GHz processor and 1 GB of RAM are standard for low ends these days, and a 7 MP camera and 5 GB of storage won’t be turning any heads. There’s a qHD (not QHD, it’s only 960 x 540) screen that’s 4.8″ big, with a ppi of almost 230.

The good news is that the A300 comes with Android 4.4.4, which most  new devices are being released with these days, regardless of value. Speaking of value, based on the specs listed here, the device should be priced between $200-$300.

Source: Sammobile

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Brazil to be first country to get LG L Fino and LG L Bello

Posted by wicked September - 13 - 2014 - Saturday Comments Off

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Last month LG announced a pair of smartphones meant for budget buyers. The LG L Fino, a 4.5-inch device, and the larger LG L Bello, a 5-inch smartphone, may not push the envelope when it comes to specs, but they do push LG’s user experience down the market spectrum. Users get Android KitKat 4.4.2 out of the box along with features like Knock Code, Gesture Shot, and the Touch & Shoot camera interface. The devices do get LG’s rear-mounted buttons.

LG has officially announced the first market to get the devices will be Brazil. Other countries located in the Latin America market are expected to follow shortly. Eventually the phones should hit European and Asian markets as well as the Commonwealth of Independent States’ markets. Pricing has not been announced. However, LG did indicate the L Fino will be available in white, black, gold, red and green. Meanwhile, the L Bello will be available in black, white and gold.

source: GSM Arena

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Motorola’s next DROID handset arrives at the FCC, heading to Verizon with wireless charging

Posted by wicked September - 12 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

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Soon, there could be a new Motorola device available going by the name DROID Turbo with cutting edge specifications. This is the device heading to Verizon with the codenamed Quark. Today, it has been discovered in an FCC filing that confirms Big Red will be carrying the device due to all of its wireless bands being present.

Aside from wireless bands and a bunch of codes being found, there are a few noteworthy items. The accessory list shows that the charger will actually be Motorola’s Turbo Charger that features Quick Charge 2.0 technology. The @DroidLanding Twitter account alluded to this a few days ago. It also supports wireless charging. Then, the battery’s model name is similar to one found in the DROID MAXX; therefore, Motorola could be prepping this device to be a beast with stamina.

If all signs pointing to the DROID Turbo (or codename Quark) having unbelievable specifications turn out to be true, are you interested in it? Let us know in the comments.

Source: FCC
Via: Droid Life

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LG G Flex 2 to have smaller, higher-resolution display

Posted by wicked September - 12 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

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It seems LG have learned from the poor sales of the original G Flex that people will not accept sub-par displays anymore. According to a report citing an LG India executive, LG’s upcoming G Flex 2 will have a smaller, higher-resolution display than its predecessor. This means a higher pixel density, which hopefully will mean a better display than the Flex’s 720p, POLED panel.

No information on other features or specs were given, or whether they’ll use another plastic LED or glass this time around, but the resolution should be at least 1080p, so it will be an improvement at the very least. LG is expected to launch their G Flex 2 early next year in South Korea with other markets to follow. Discuss below if LG’s upcoming curved device piques your interest.

Via: Phone Arena
Source: Gizbot

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Motorola working a “Pure Edition” of the Motorola Moto X

Posted by wicked September - 12 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

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Motorola just announced the Moto X (2014) last week with availability through all the major U.S. carriers some time later this month. When revealed, Motorola also noted that they would make a fully unlocked and bootloader unlockable version available. Some new information has surfaced with regard to that particular variant of the Moto X. Reports indicate Motorola is planning to call the device the Moto X Pure Edition when it ships. This is apparently a nod to the many people who like to call stock Android “pure.” Despite the moniker, Motorola does not appear to be planning on loading the device with stock Android, although it will be close, as it will get some of their tweaks. However, it will not be encumbered with bloat or crapware and it should be on a slightly faster update schedule since the updates will not have to go through the carrier process for certification. Some buyers may also be interested in the fact that this “Pure Edition” of the Moto X will not come with any carrier branding emblazoned on it.

source: The Verge

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HTC One (M8) for Verizon now receiving software update with Extreme Power Saving Mode and more

Posted by wicked September - 11 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

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After yesterday’s delay, owners of the HTC One (M8) on Verizon are now seeing a software update appear. It includes Android 4.4.3 and HTC’s Extreme Power Saving Mode to drag out battery life as much as possible.

The update is just over 673MB and Verizon recommends having your device plugged in while updating. After downloading, the install process will take about fifteen minutes or so.

Here is the full list of improvements and fixes Verizon has included:

  • Prolonged battery life with new integrated Extreme Power Saving (EPS) mode
  • Upgraded version of Verizon Cloud (13.6.4.28)
  • Mobile hotspot connectivity
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Google Security patch
  • Camera app force closure issue has been fixed
  • Device root vulnerability issue has been resolved
  • LED notification issue has been fixed
  • Resolution for the device not able to power ON in rare scenarious

Are you seeing the update today? Let us know in the comments.

Source: Verizon

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A closer look at the battery life on the Moto 360

Posted by wicked September - 11 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

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The Moto 360 debut was a little tarnished from a lot of talk about the battery life, and rightfully so. After using the LG G Watch for over 2 months, and switching to the Moto 360, I too noticed a dramatic difference. The early reviewers immediately said you can’t get through a day with it, then other sites chimed in saying, “it’s not all that bad,” and chalked it up to everyone overly using it the first few days. That can be true at times, but the opposite can happen when someone is trying to prove something they want so bad. It’s called rationalization. Let’s face it, we all want to say the Moto 360 has fantastic battery life since it’s a very cool watch. I find that people will purposely not use a device as much to convince themselves that things are A-OK. Get a notification and grab it from your phone instead, and so on. Trust me, I am guilty of this myself. Plus there is the whole argument about my usage is more than yours and his usage is less than hers, and blah blah blah. So how does one test the device taking all that out of the picture?

It’s quite simple. You test the device side by side with another device that you have a decent history with. What I did was run an app on both the Moto 360 and the G Watch that will leave the display on full time. I also turned off notifications so there would be no argument that more or less notifications were sent to either watch. Lastly, I set the brightness level to 4 on both watches. I simply charged up each watch to 100%, took them off their chargers and started up the same app and left them until they turned off with 0% battery life. This is very similar to when I test smartphone and tablet batteries by looping video to see how long they last. I know this isn’t an actual use case, but it doesn’t matter since it will show exactly what the difference is between both devices. Since I can’t run continuous video on Android Wear, I used the Coffee Time For Android Wear app, which allows you to pay for your Starbucks coffee with a flick of the wrist. When the app is opened on the watch, it remains on the screen (fully lit) until the user turns it off.

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Let’s start with the G Watch. It lasted 8 hours and 6 minutes (486 total minutes). The Moto 360 had a completely different story. It lasted only 3 hours and 32 minutes (212 total minutes), which is less than half of what the G Watch offered. The G Watch had 57% better battery life. Now one thing I did notice was that the Moto 360 seemed brighter even though both watches were set to a level of 4. I have no technical way of measuring the brightness, but it appears to me a level of 2 on the Moto 360 seems pretty close to the G Watch at 4. I wanted to be fair to the Moto 360, so I ran another test, but this time setting the Moto 360 with a brightness level of 2. It did fair much better, lasting 4 hours and 26 minutes (266 total minutes). However, the G Watch was still 45% better even under that condition.

Now let’s look at my real world experiences. With the ambient display (always-on display) enabled, I can only get about 12 to 13 hours out of the Moto 360. With the ambient display off and auto brightness on (probably stays at a brightness of 1 or 2 most of the time), I get about 15 to 17 hours. And when I do get 17 hours, it’s with barely any usage. In looking at the G Watch, I have been consistently getting 17 hours out of it with the always-on display enabled and the brightness set to 4, but I also have 25% to 35% battery life left every night before it goes on the charger. This translates to roughly 22.67 to 26.15 hours of total usage depending on my day.

Now let’s see if how my real world results line up with the rapid drain test I just conducted. I know I have a good foundation with the G Watch since my experience is over 2 months of usage. Again, that’s 22.67 to 26.15 hours of usage with always-on enabled. Going with the low side of 22.67 hours (always-on enabled) for the G Watch, based on my test, the Moto 360 should get 9.75 hours with the brightness set to 4 or 12.47 hours with a brightness level of 2. Going with the high side of 26.15 hours for the G Watch, the Moto 360 should get 11.24 hours with the brightness set to 4 or 14.38 hours with a brightness level of 2.  My early experience of 12 to 13 hours doesn’t seem all that off now does it? Again, this is with the always-on display (G Watch) and ambient screen (Moto 360) enabled on both devices.

Unfortunately I don’t have any long term experience with the always-on display disabled on the G Watch, but I got 30 to 32 hours with the few times I tried it. Using the high side, that would translate to 14.4 hours on the Moto 360 with a brightness level of 4 or 17.6 hours with a brightness level of 2. My 15 to 17 hours is right in line, but to give you an example for today, I am on pace for a 15.5 hour day, and I have the brightness set at 1. Absolutely ridiculous. Using the ratios for the rapid drain test, you would think I would be getting more than 17.6 hours. My guess is that the ancient OMAP processor is not as efficient as the Snapdragon 400 so the spread actually widens with longer cycles. The days that I actually get 17 hours, it’s with very, and I mean very, limited use.

As you can see, the G Watch will get your through the day with some spare change, but the Moto 360 will barely make it, and that’s if you’re willing to turn off the ambient screen. If you’re like me and like to enjoy your watch face, you have zero chance of making it through the day. Now I know the G Watch has a bigger battery, but that is irrelevant to the fact that the Moto 360 might not offer adequate battery life. I am merely trying to further prove just how good or bad the Moto 360 battery life is. I should also note that the Moto 360 ambient screen is a lot dimmer than the G Watch’s always-on display. Plus, as I mentioned in my previous article, the Moto 360 display still turns off in ambient mode. With all of these gimmicks to save battery life you would think the Moto 360 would be the thoroughbred here, but unfortunately it’s not. I can only assume the OMAP processor is the culprit.

Assuming you don’t mind turning off the ambient screen, 15-17 hours seems like enough if you consider 7 – 9 hours of sleep (who the hell gets 9 hours of sleep?), but what about the days in which you’re up later or if your usage is high? How about when you want to use a third party watch face that might drain your battery a little more? The bottom line is Android Wear is meant to be used. That means glancing at your emails throughout the day and deleting them if they are unnecessary. Responding to Hangouts or SMS messages or even checking into Foursquare (Swarm). It makes no sense to spend your hard earned money on a smartwatch and barely use it so you can try to just make it before you hit the sack. A smartwatch battery needs to last 20+ hours in order to guarantee that you will actually get through the day. I also believe it needs to provide the same 20+ hours with one of it’s main features turned on. Yes, the ambient screen. Those that like it should be able to get through an entire day just like with the G Watch, and those that don’t mind turning it off should get the added benefit of longer life if they desire it.

No matter how you slice it, the Moto 360 battery life  isn’t adequate enough, and in my opinion is a major fail for what is the best looking smartwatch on the market. I wish I had a different story, but I have tried everything, and it just doesn’t cut it.

 

 

 

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HTC puts Lock Screen in the Play Store for easier updating

Posted by wicked September - 11 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

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Now more than ever, hardware manufacturers are spinning off core software features into the Play Store. This is because it allows them to push updates a lot easier as they do not have to go through carriers with entire software updates. The latest app to arrive in the Play Store is Lock Screen from HTC. For now, there do not seem to be any feature changes; however, HTC’s changelog for the app does say that it now prevents unintentional factor resets.

Hit the break for the gallery and download links.

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Play Store Download Link

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