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Xperia Z5 Family hands-on photos snapped before official launch

Posted by wicked September - 2 - 2015 - Wednesday Comments Off

This is gonna be a busy week for Sony. The gates Of IFA have opened which means a lot of companies will be unveiling their latest products in one of the biggest tech shows every year. Before Sony releases the new Xperia Z5 family tomorrow, some hands-on photos have been leaked earlier today. The images don’t look fake nor do they seem like renders–they look real.

Dutch website nu.nl shared these photos for everyone to see. We’re not surprised that these pictures are out because we’ve been seeing a few leaks lately including a video in French and those renders that confirmed the 23MP camera. We’ve been saying that the Xperia Z5 will come with two other variants too: a Z5 Compact and a Z5 Premium.

The latest set of hands-on photos shows use the ‘XPERIA’ logo on the side and the new location of the buttons, now on the lower part instead of the middle of the side frame. The difference in sizes are very obvious but we’re not sure which one is which.

Check out these hands-on photos:

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Still can’t wait for the official announcement? A GFXBench benchmark has also confirmed the specs and details we’ve been hearing including a 5.1-inch 1080p display on the Xperia Z5 and a smaller 4.5-inch 720p display on the Xperia Z5 Compact. There’s also the 5MP front-facing cam, 23MP rear camera, 3GB RAM/2GB RAM for the Z5/Z5 Compact, 32GB built-in storage, and Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor for both Sony Xperia smartphones.

sony xperia z5 benchmark

VIA: XPERIA blog (1), (2)

Sony Xperia Z5 shown off ahead of IFA launch

Posted by wicked August - 31 - 2015 - Monday Comments Off

We all know that Sony is unveiling the Xperia Z5 in not just one but three variants: the basic Xperia Z5, an Xperia Z5 compact, and the Xperia Z5 Premium. The company has already confirmed and teased it will make an important announcement this week at the IFA 2015 in Berlin. We’ve heard a number of rumors and seen a lot of leaks already. Just the other day, more press renders were leaked and that the 23MP camera was confirmed.

Even before that set, some dummy photos were also leaked and the phone is said to include Sony’s 4K X-Reality PRO for Xperia devices. Of course, days before the event, more details are expected to be released including information on specs. New details were sent to PhoneArena, saying that the Xperia Z5 Compact will be smaller than the Xperia Z5. The Z5 Compact phone will have a 4.6-inch display screen with 720 x 1280 HD resolution while the Xperia Z5 will have a 5.2-inch display with 1080 x 1920 resolution. The Z5 Premium will have a bigger 5.5-inch screen and with 4K resolution and that 23 megapixel cam we mentioned earlier.

Screenshots of the phones were also shared by the anonymous source. Looking at the images, they seem to match the phone featured on a video recently shared over on Reddit. The video is in French but it’s a new smartphone from the company with the Xperia branding and the familiar design that’s obviously Sony’s.

The Sony Xperia Z5 is believed to run a 2.0 GHz octa-core Snapdragon 810 processor, Adreno 430 GPU, 3GB RAM, 32GB of built-in storage, 23 megapixel camera, 8MP front-facing camera, and a fingerprint scanner. The volume and power buttons are now placed on the lower right side of the phone, instead of the usual middle side location.

I don’t speak French but those who understand the language are saying the 23MP camera and 4K display have been confirmed. Phone is also said to be dust-resistant and waterproof. This video, even if in low-resolution, is the closest and most believable proof we have so for of the upcoming Xperia Z5 line. The IFA is just around the corner so let’s be more patient as Sony promised a September 2 launch.

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VIA: Phone Arena, XPERIA blog

SOURCE: reddit

Sony to reportedly release Xperia Z5, two other variants on September 2

Posted by wicked August - 31 - 2015 - Monday Comments Off

With IFA 2015 set to start this September 4, we need to prepare ourselves for all the new smartphones and devices that will be introduced and will fight for our attention if we’re looking for a brand new gadget. Sony will supposedly be releasing not just one but three smartphones, including the new flagship Xperia Z5, plus two other variants of that device, the Xperia Z5 Compact, and the Xperia Z5 Premium.

The brand new flagship will supposedly come with a 5.5-inch display with a 1080 x 920 pixel resolution. It will be running on a Snapdragon 810 SoC with an octa-core 2.0 GHz CPU. It is expected to have 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, but we’re not sure yet if it will follow in Samsung’s footsteps and not have an expandable storage, or if it will still have a microSD slot so that it can claim a distinct advantage over the new Samsung devices. It will have a 23MP main camera and an 8MP front-facing one.

Meanwhile, the Xperia Z5 compact will of course be smaller, with a 4.6-inch screen and of course a lower resolution at 720 x 1280 HD. The Xperia Z5 Premium will be slightly bigger with its 5.5-inch 4K resolution with a pixel density of 801-805ppi. It will also have a 23MP main camera which can actually take 4K videos. All three models will supposedly have fingerprint scanners on the side. Based on some leaked photos, the power button and volume buttons are a bit farther down the right side because of this new feature.

If these leaks and rumors are true, then you have even more smartphones to choose from, depending on what you’re actually looking for, and of course the price point of these devices. All will be revealed on September 2, during their event day at the IFA.

Screenshot 2015-08-31 14.27.23

Screenshot 2015-08-31 14.27.05

VIA: Phone Arena

Some more press renders of Xperia Z5 leaked, 23MP camera confirmed

Posted by wicked August - 28 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

The Sony Xperia Z5 is coming. Oh we’re sure of that and we know that Sony will be making a grand reveal at the IFA 2015 next week in Berlin. We’ve seen a number of renders and leaked images but the latest set available is the closest so far to the real thing that we’ve been imagining. Sony already posted a teaser image on social media and now, some press shots of the Xperia Z5 give us an idea that next flagship will have a slightly rounded frame and a 23 megapixel camera.

It’s less than a week before one of the biggest tech events begins so expect more leaks, rumors, teasers, and details to be revealed in the coming days. Until Sony makes an official announcement and shows off the next Xperia Z5 and a few more variants like the Z5+ or the Z5 Compact, we’re considering this as just another leak or rumor. Nothing has been confirmed yet so let’s just wait and see.

So far, here’s what we know about the upcoming Sony Xperia Z5: phone will launch in September would Snapdragon 820 and 4GB RAM inside,  will have a fingerprint scanner possibly a 4K display, and that this next-gen Xperia aka Sony H2 will be “Made for Bond”.

So many rumors, so little time. Be glad that the IFA 2015 is happening in less than a week.

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VIA: XPERIA blog

Sony Xperia Z5 reported dummy photos leaked

Posted by wicked August - 25 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

Sometimes, we really do wonder if these leaks are actual leaks and not just PR stunts from the OEMs to drum up publicity for their upcoming products. But either way, at least it gives us something to talk and speculate about as the release date draws near (supposedly). We’ve been treated to some leaked images of the Sony Xperia Z5 Compact’s promo image, but now we also have the supposed dummy unit of the Xperia Z5 as well.

The dummy unit will supposedly be almost similar in design to what will actually be released. The photos of course don’t show us the actual specs but can give us an idea of at least the design and the look of the new upcoming flagship. But if you’re interested in what will it be on the inside, of course nothing official, here are some of the alleged specs gathered from various sites. It will supposedly be running on an octa-core (Qualcomm Snapdragon 810) SoC and will have either a 3 or 4 GB RAM.

It’s also hard to see from the images what size the screen will be, but there have been some reports that it will be Quad HD with a 1440 x 2560 pixel resolution. The all-important camera is rumored to be at 21.5 MP for the main cam with 4K video recording. No news yet on the very important front-facing selfie cam though.

Reports have said that the Xperia Z5, together with its other variants, will be launching at the IFA 2015 in Berlin next week. But if you base it on last year’s decision by Sony to not launch any high-end devices, then this is highly unlikely. The end of year launch rumors might be more on the mark. But we have a few more days to go before we can confirm anything.

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VIA: Nowhere Else

Next Sony Xperia teased to have greater focus, to be unveiled Sept 2

Posted by wicked August - 25 - 2015 - Tuesday Comments Off

Nothing much to say here but a new Xperia is coming. It’s not really a surprise because we’ve been hearing a lot of rumors and seeing a lot of leaked images lately including that of a rendered Xperia Z5 Plus having a 4K display, and the Z5 Compact having a fingerprint scanner. We also knew about a Sony announcement being confirmed for September 2 at the IFA event in Berlin.

Sony Xperia GB teased the public by posting a blurred photo of the next Xperia flagship device doing what it does best: take photos. Sony only said the smartphone will have “greater focus” and “all will become clear on 02.09.2015″. We’re guessing it will be an Xperia Z5 because Sony already used the Xperia Z4 name although it’s just an improved Z3 and is also known as Z3+ outside Japan.

So far, we know that the Sony Xperia Z5 might have 4K X-Reality PRO, fingerprint scanner, it’s “Made for Bond”, and will come with another premium smartphone. We’re guessing that it will feature a Quick Charge 2.0 since the old Xperia Z2′s was enabled recently with a simple hack. And since it’s slowly becoming a standard, we don’t see any reason why Sony won’t bring such charging tech to a new model.

I guess we’ll only have to wait and see for the gates of IFA to open. September is just around the corner so be patient, you’ll see the new-generation Xperia next week.

SOURCE: Sony Xperia GB

Sunday Debate: Are Push Notification Ads Ever Okay?

Posted by wicked August - 23 - 2015 - Sunday Comments Off

Sunday Debate: Push Notification Ads

Join us in a fun Sunday Debate on the problems with push notification ads (and how you would fix them). Come with your opinions and feel free to read some of our thoughts, then pick your side or play devil’s advocate to get your voice heard and engage in friendly discussion. You can read our food-for-thought or jump straight into the fray below!

Samsung is the latest OEM to adopt push notification ads on their devices, and the consumer uproar is once again echoing across the net. However, the issue is larger than a simple conflict between consumers and phone makers. Businesses of all stripes – from OEMs to carriers to minor app developers and soon to web devs making standard mobile websites – are sneaking ads into previously pristine parts of our phones. But how are these latest versions even legal under Google’s developer policy? More importantly, what makes them so distasteful to the non-Googlers out there – the smartphone users and developers like us? These push notifications are just ordinary ads, after all, and we as a community go out of our way to find ad-supported “free” versions of apps whenever possible.

For this Sunday Debate, we’re going to tackle the tricky issue of advertising and determine once and for all where we draw the line of acceptability, and why. In many ways, Forums members and readers here have a greater stake than any other group when it comes to mobile ads. We’re the developers, tech enthusiasts, and Android evangelists of the world, and therefore have an obligation to help shape technology’s future. It’s high time we collectively built a set of best practices and rose to that challenge, starting with push notifications.

The story of advertising is as old as time, but the latest chapter in its development started two years ago this month when Google amended its Play Developer Program Policy to prohibit ads in the status bar. Here’s the relevant addition, emphasis ours.

Apps and their ads must not display advertisements through system level notifications on the user’s device, unless the notifications derive from an integral feature provided by the installed app (e.g., an airline app that notifies users of special deals, or a game that notifies users of in-game promotions).

The notion of messages that are integral to an app’s stated purpose is central to our discussion of Samsung, HTC, Sony, and the various third parties now filling up our “system level notifications” with spam, so let’s dive right in.

Samsung GS6 Edge Plus Advertisement
Peel Smart Remote Ad
HTC BlinkFeed Advertisement
Xperia Lounge Advertisement

Samsung

samsung push serviceTwo days ago, on the heels of Samsung’s S6 Edge+ launch, the company hatched the bright idea to peddle its new phone through push notifications. The ads arrived by way of the Samsung Push Service, a helper app tasked with adding unread counts to app icons and managing messages from Samsung’s various self-titled tools like Link, Wallet, and Pay. Is knowing that Samsung has a new phone on the market derived from an integral feature provided by Samsung Push Service? Maybe. Google’s own examples talk about notifications of special deals and promotions, and this app’s scope is roughly the size of Samsung itself. If you’re able to keep a straight face while pronouncing that a new $800 phone to replace your existing Note 4 is a “special deal,” then I suppose the ad holds up against the Play policies. This doesn’t mean we have to like it.

peel smart remoteSeparately, the Peel Smart Remote is a third-party app bundled with newer Galaxies, and it’s in hot water alongside Samsung for pushing unwanted ads. Are you interested in the Bravo series Million Dollar Listing? If you own a Samsung phone, then Peel, Land Rover, and your OEM think the answer is “yes.” Is TV series promotion related to Peel’s “live TV and content discovery” service? Absolutely. But again, we don’t have to like that our stock phones are promoting Bravo.

HTC

htc-sense-homeEarlier this month, HTC made good on its announcement of BlinkFeed ads by feeding the new Fantastic Four film poster to owners of the One M7, M8, and M9. The ad itself was disguised as a recommended theme, thus bypassing Google’s restrictions, but users quickly took to social media decrying HTC just the same. It didn’t help that the movie in question was even more poorly received than the M9.

Sony

Xperia LoungeThe Xperia Lounge app, a pre-installed media app on Xperia phones, drew ire from some users by sending out notifications about movie posters. Again, these posters were delivered as custom themes to install, but they were met with a tempered version of the HTC response above. Opt-outs helped, even if some complained about needing to accept the Lounge EULA in order to find the right setting.

Others

The OEMs highlighted here are far from the only culprits; they’re simply the most visible from recent memory. The fact is that most apps use push notifications for a variety of purposes. They help increase engagement, boost sales, add a bit of ad revenue, and convey important alerts like messaging pings and tornado warnings. Most fall within the letter of the (Play Store) law, but a few are less than appreciated. Here are a some extra examples spanning the gamut from benign to enraging.

  • New message/email/IM notifications
  • Breaking news alerts
  • Top stories of the day/week/month summaries
  • “We miss you; come back to your neglected app” pleas
  • Deal alerts. A new theme, wallpaper, phone, or car is waiting for you!

Starter Questions: Why Do You Hate Push Notifications (And Ads)?

Advertisements are nothing new, and in the android community we generally prefer to suffer through a few banners and popups than pay for a premium app. Why, then, is the notification drawer considered sacrosanct? What’s different about push notifications, and do our feelings about them change if we tweak a variable or two?

Content of the notification – “Please buy this thing from our advertising partner” is miles apart from a shopping app telling you about a sales event. Which ones do you click, which do you ignore, and which cause you to fly into a fit of rage? Based on media backlash, it’s safe to say people dislike movie promos and $800 phone adverts, but why, and what are the limits?

Opt-In vs Opt-Out – Are you more accepting of ads if you have to opt in? Does the presence of an opt-out take away the sting?

Granular Notification Settings – Android allows for muting app notifications, but it’s an all-or-nothing proposition. Is this a problem? What about when using apps that deliver useful notifications (like new message alerts) alongside undesirable ones? How can app makers and Google change notification options to ease the pain (if it exists)?

Compensation – The Amazon Fire Phone is subsidized by lockscreen ads, and apps like Slidejoy bring the premise to Android at large. Banner ads and popups regular turn paid apps free. Would being somehow compensated for push notification ads make them worth the trouble? What sort of payment would you need?

Where do you draw the line on acceptable push notifications? Duke it out in the comments!

Sony reportedly to release 4K X-Reality PRO for Xperia devices

Posted by wicked August - 17 - 2015 - Monday Comments Off

The rumors that the upcoming Sony Xperia Z5+ phablet will be the first device to have a 4k display on a screen that size may have received even further confirmation. Sources are saying that the OEM will be releasing a new display software for upcoming Xperia devices and will also be updating their X-Reality, which means it may turn into their 4K X-Reality. While that high a resolution may not be ideal for smaller screens, there may be additional plans, like an updated software, to adjust the pixels to our normal eyes.

A user agent profile that appeared last week seemingly confirmed the existence of the 4k display in the Xperia Z5+ as specs show that it will have a 4K Ultra HD display and an unprecedented 2160 x 3480 resolution on its still undetermined screen size. Rumors put it at 5.5 inches or bigger, which means that it will have 801 PPI.

Another report from Digi-wo seems to support this as well, saying that the Xperia Z5+ will have the 4K X-Reality, while the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact will not. This is quite understandable given the effect it will have on a smaller screen, which many experts agree should only be able to handle a certain amount of pixels per inch.

Currently, Sony uses the 4K X-Reakity Pro on their 4K televisions so that the content would have HD quality. But again, there are some concerns about packing in pixels per inch if it will eventually go and develop something similar fro mobile devices. But let’s wait and see if they will be able to fix this issue, if they really are bringing 4K to the Xperia Z5+ phablet.

VIA: Xperia Blog

Here’s how to enable Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 on your Sony Xperia Z2

Posted by wicked August - 17 - 2015 - Monday Comments Off

While gadget town is busy anticipating the arrival of the Sony Xperia Z5 and its siblings, some XDA developers were involved in discovering how the Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 feature in an old Xperia Z2 would be activated. Sony was believed to be hiding the feature inside according to showlyshah, a Senior Member on XDA. He said that while searching for more information about QuickCharging 2.0, he saw a list made by Qualcomm of devices that support the new charging technology. The Xperia Z2 was included although Sony did not officially disclose that it’s capable of quick charging.

Sony even refused the claim said the developer but then later on admitted that it’s a feature on the Japanese version (SO-03F). Based on XDA devs’ numerous experiences tinkering on Sony devices, the company is already known for disabling some features including noise cancellation, Bravia engine, Bionz engine, 4K, and slow motion video. These features didn’t escape the genius hackers so they shared the patches on the forum.

XDA member showlyshah started a forum on the subject and with the help of several other developers, he was able to enable QC-2.0 on his Xperia Z2. What he did was to ask a Kernel developer AndroPluso to build test kernels for him. The test kernels included parts of QC-2.0 and then install the original SO-03F firmware. That wasn’t enough so he then created a flashable zip of the SO-03F system partition, flashed it, and removed some things from it. Next step, he unlocked the bootloader and then followed the following steps:

1.) Flashed AndroPlus’ v59 kernel that support fota recovery.
2.) Booted into recovery before flashing the system partition zip.
3.) Flashed stock docomo kernel, baseband, and loader using flash tool without having to reboot again.
4) Wait for phone to be rebooted.
5) Used his Samsung QC-2.0 charger (5v@2000ma and 9v@1670ma), plugged it, and then voila, the Sony Xperia Z2 started charging at QuickCharge 2.0 speed.

Watch video below:

While this is one great way to make most of a smartphone, hacking is not always advisable especially if you don’t speak dev-talk. As we always say when it comes to rooting, hacking, or cracking something, do this AT YOUR OWN RISK.

Head on over to XDA for more details.

VIA: XDA

Sony Xperia Z5 Plus rendered image sighted

Posted by wicked August - 14 - 2015 - Friday Comments Off

Taking a break from the Samsung hype today, here are some information about the upcoming Sony Xperia Z5+. As you all know, the Japanese company is expected to reveal the device as one of the two Sony H2 flagship phones rumored. Just yesterday, we noted that it may be the first mobile device to have a 4K display screen if we are to believe a user-agent profile (UAP). We also learned last week  that the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact could each have a fingerprint scanner.

Since an IFA 2015 announcement has been confirmed already, we just have to be patient and wait for September 2. But ven before that day comes, expect to hear more rumors and see leaked images from anywhere in the web like this slide here that refers to a S70+ ….possibly the Xperia Z5+ phablet.

This image gives us an idea that it will look very similar to the previous Xperia Z3+, complete with the OmniBalance design. There seems to be three color variants: Gold, Black, and Chrome. Okay, so the image is in low res but this is the closest we have so far. Will this arrive with the Xperia Z5 and the Z5 Compact? Let’s wait and see what Sony has in store for us this year.

VIA: XPERIA blog